What if You Knew Then What You Know Now?

Have you ever said, gosh if I only knew then what I know now…? Who hasn’t right?

We know we can never turn back time (no matter how much Cher sings about it) and the full picture hindsight gives you is never quite possible while you are living the moment.

But, what if you could take just a bit of that wisdom and knowledge and use it now, not after the fact? How might that change things for you?

Business intelligenceA recent sad event made this clear for me. You see just a few weeks ago my beloved garden was producing cucumbers in abundance. I was happy to my core. Since we make green juice every day in our house, we blow through cucumbers in bulk. It was heaven. And then, all of a sudden, I noticed something very subtle about the leaves and buds. When I went to the local nursery to inquire, their vegetable specialist told me the plants had a fungus due to the extra rain we’ve had. She assured me it was nothing we did “wrong”.   She suggested an organic fungicide to try and preserve the new growth (old growth would die regardless).

So far, this remedy isn’t helping and I am just beside myself about the cukes. I think- if I only knew a few days or even a week beforehand, maybe I could’ve done something to prevent this? But I didn’t know what to look for, or how to assess what I saw.

You might not be a gardener or care about cucumbers as much as I do, but certainly you’ve experienced a similar moment in your business, right? Where you’re humming along, taking the days as they come, and then bam! You’re hit by surprise with something – an overwhelming tax bill, a quick exodus of clients, a sudden upsurge of growth that strains your team and systems (or makes you wish you had them). You wish you could’ve seen it coming.

Well, what if you could see it coming? Maybe not 100% of the time, but what if the vast majority of “surprises” could be predicted before they happen?

If you routinely look at data – of the holistic health of your business and what’s happening around you, you can. This isn’t magic. It doesn’t have to be hard either. Big companies use big data and predictive analytics to figure out what is going to happen in the future – on a macro level and with individual customers. This is how online stores like amazon know what you are likely to buy next. How big companies decide when to expand and when to wait.

Unless you’re a mega-corporation, you don’t have to get that complicated to reap the benefits of knowing NOW instead of in hindsight. As a small business you are more nimble and can make huge strides with less effort.

Here’s how you do it.

You do this is by simply taking time to look at the key indicators of the health of your business and then focusing on the one most important thing you need to do right now. Not 10,000 things. Not the 40 things you learned at the last conference you attended. ONE THING.

You do this at regular, consistent intervals and then repeat.

Success is determined by focusing on the right things at the right time. Wouldn’t you rather move forward with the power of knowledge coupled with intuition rather than looking back with a sigh of regret? I thought so!

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