My Professor Was Right (Why You Need to Adapt to Survive)
I remember the last day of my business management class. Our lecture had ended and in our last moments as college students, my professor was giving us a heart-to-heart, doing her best to ready us for the startling reality we were soon to face.
"Things move quickly," she warned us. "We're living in a fast-paced world."
That was over a decade ago. Today, describing the world we live in as "fast-paced" is an understatement.
In the last week, all of the following happened:
1) Facebook (and Instagram) announced upcoming changes to their platforms, narrowing the reach of businesses and publishers in an attempt to increase meaningful interactions and decrease spammy posts.
2) YouTube announced a change to their partnership platform, requiring channels to have at least 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch-time within the last 12 months. All channels that don't make the cut are stripped of monetization. (My channel didn't make the cut, but I rarely post on there, so I'm not losing anything really.)
3) HuffPost emailed me this morning to announce that they are getting rid of their contributor platform. Old posts will stay up, but people will no longer be able to publish posts on the blog.
One of my favorite pieces of advice from #GaryVaynerchuk is "Don't get romantic." In other words, don't get too comfortable, things can change in an instant.
Look at what happened to Blockbuster. They refused to acknowledge the threat of consumer demand for instant gratification -- the ability to stream movies right in their living room. Instead, they wagered the success of their business on the illusion that customers would prefer the nostalgic experience of picking out a movie with their family at the rental store. Where is Blockbuster now?
Things move quickly. New apps are launched. Algorithms change. Trends come and go as surely as the sun rises and sets. What worked yesterday might not work tomorrow. We can complain and gripe all we want, but changes are inevitable, and will continue to happen. It's the ebb and flow of business and life.
Is this a blessing or a curse? That depends on how you choose to perceive it.
The way I see it, we have two choices: Reminisce of the past and accomplish little, or welcome the challenge of finding new opportunities. When you put it that way, the choice is clear.