Move the needle might be a tired cliché or metaphor, but for entrepreneurs it’s an important gauge for whether you’re making progress. As entrepreneurs we get stuck in thinking that ‘launching’ requires a big idea that changes the course of history. We, therefore, delay launching new products or companies because we’re waiting for ‘perfection’ or the next big technology disruptor.
Not all businesses need to be 100% ready in order to launch, nor do we need to always change the course of history. In fact, I recently learned at an entrepreneurial conference that ‘launch’ should occur if you’re 80% of the way there, giving you time to test the market and make adjustments prior to investing possibly unnecessary capital. I challenge you as an entrepreneur to move the needle by implementing one new idea, one process or one change each day or week that gets you closer to a firm launch date or new product release.
As an administrator who came to a college from the land of entrepreneurship, I discovered that my innovations and new ideas need not change the axis by which the college spins. Consistent and deliberate changes or idea implementation each week advances the cause of my organization. As entrepreneurs, status quo can never be part of our vocabulary. Entrepreneurs would never think, ‘How can we keep doing exactly what we’re doing today?’, but rather, ‘How can we make an adjustment or change to what we’re doing today, to make it better for tomorrow?’ Progress can only be measured by change.
Change is inherently uncomfortable. Entrepreneurship is generally a state of discomfort. Innovate or die! Another tired but true cliché. Ask yourself what change or new idea you’re willing to make in order to advance your cause each day. Set a timeline to make it happen. It’s the best way to move the needle.