Learning How to Pivot

Pivot is a hot word in the startup world these days. When your first product or business idea isn’t working, you pivot to Plan B. When that happens, it can actually feel like a relief because you are tired of the frustration of the first plan not working out.

My business partner and I are pivoting with the wine company right now. We had been working hard to get our tasting room open on Anderson Street but… that isn’t happening right now. So, we are pivoting and selling wholesale. It was a relief. It was progress. Now we are in 18 stores and making enough on sales to cover our expenses. That is good.

We met last week to talk about the business and some things we have coming up and the tasting room renovations were on the agenda. My partner is annoyingly right almost all the time and he did a good job at reminding me about pivoting. I got that we had to pivot, but I was spending a lot of time and energy trying to get us back to the original plan (the tasting room). A better use of our time would be to say ‘Hey, we pivoted. Where do we go from here to reach our goals?’ It isn’t a pivot if you are just trying to get right back to the original plan. That didn’t work. Move on.

He was right (again) and it was again a relief. It took pressure off. I was able to see the big picture again. I was so obsessed with getting back to the original plan.

As things go, with giant ‘a-ha’ moments. I can’t stop thinking about it and where are other places where I haven’t given the pivot the full commitment it deserves.

Plans change.

Things don’t work out.

Instead of drowning in those details and trying so hard to get back to that, I should realize there has been a pivot. I should decide what my goals are, what are the most important things to me, and how will I take my new angle and make the rest of those things happen?