Seeing What Works

The concept of pivoting in business can qualify what might otherwise be interpreted as feelings of anxiety or uncertainty.

It was a windy Autumn morning five years ago.

I was sat in the upstairs of a Café Nero taking shelter, waiting on a business coach I was due to meet with over coffee.

I’d only recently launched my first company and with little idea what I was doing decided to inquire into coaching.

As it happened, this would be my first and last meeting with this particular coach.

The conversation was, in the most part, a sales pitch.

That said, over the course of the two-hour meeting, I did learn something new.

I was introduced to the concept of pivoting.

Mumbo Jumbo

For some time I'd had an aversion to language like ‘pivoting’.

Invariably corporate-speak, industry-lingo and other types of jargon get overused and become a turn-off for most people.

In this instance I wasn’t familiar with the term.

Rather than falling on deaf ears however, I found the concept of pivoting in business helpful and reassuring.

It legitimised what I was experiencing at the time.

And it eased my concerns around something that was causing me a degree of anxiety.

Seeing what works

I was in the midst of feeling out the way ahead.

There was no plan or journey mapped out that I intended on following.

My idea was to see where I could add value and provide a service that was lacking in the market.

I was sequentially testing different approaches to see what worked, then changing direction based on the outcomes.

The anxiety came from the belief that I should have a clear idea of what my business will be offering.

I didn’t have that, but I was convinced I’d be able to find it.

As it happens, this is a tried and true method of launching a business.

It’s called pivoting (or as I prefer to call it, seeing what works).

Whatever you’re doing, it’s right

Learning about pivoting gave me a confidence boost to continue down my path.

In hindsight, what I learnt was a label and a definition.

I was already ‘pivoting’.

Practically speaking, nothing changed.

Whatever way you’re doing what you’re doing right now, that’s the right way.

At least it’s the right way for you, at this moment in time.

When you change your direction, that’s your pivot.

Easy to say with hindsight, but important to remember in those moments when the future is somewhat a blur.