The Conversation Has Changed

The conversation has changed. This is important. I want to share with you what I learned during my month in the USA in Las Vegas, New York City, and at Harvard Business School’s GIA Global Leadership Course.

In 2020 the world needed to learn how to conduct business inside of a digital footprint.

You needed to quickly translate what you know how to do so well offline into the new and often more powerful way of doing it online.

Then just as our industry, along with the rest of the world, had figured out how to operate in the new normal and acknowledged the pending recession, a super-power sitting on top of 30% of the world’s diamonds attacked an underdog. The world cried. The sanctions were levied. And the ramifications began to mount.

Retailer pressures and sanctions demanded rapid pivots from the supply-chain, which echoed into traceability, governance, human rights. Power-centers traded places, like cards, and the industry had to figure it out, fast.

As I traveled around the States during the month of June, the questions changed. Instead of the business challenges of being locked-down, business leaders are asking, “How should I modify my strategy given all the changes in the world and our industry?”

Can our strategies remain the same? Can our execution plans be followed? Do we need new tools to validate the claims we make?

I cheered at this. These are the right questions to ask, and answer. Right now.

These tectonic shifts in consumer and supply-chain landscapes require reassessments of business strategy on a holistic scale.

Gone are conversations about how to connect virtually. Now we plan how to create a robust, executable business strategy within the new landscape and how to implement it.

The B2B and B2C consumer’s behavior has shifted.
The demands on the supply chain have increased.
The rusty rails we ran an industry on, which needed to change, are crumbling like pastries.

In a wonderful conversation with a fierce businesswoman I respect, she said to me, “We can only go as fast as the pace of industry.” Right now, industry is evolving apace. If you’re executing on the business strategy you put in place at the end of 2021, take this advice: pause. Look at the market analysis upon which you based your plans. Take a fresh look at your SWOT. Look at what is happening in our industry today. And modify.

When industry puts its sneakers on, we all need to be running.

Be well,

Elle

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