How technology gives you the freedom to explore new ideas

Sometimes all it takes is a shift of focus to make a company successful, thankfully mobile tech makes it possible

Perspective is everything. Sometimes, when you're so close to your business, it's hard to see the opportunities that come your way. Industries change, products come and go and customers are always exploring other options. Both big names and smaller players can be surprised by a loss of relevance, or by the emergence of a powerful new idea. "Disruptive innovators" have changed the business landscape and redefined existing models. For example, Airbnb owns no real estate, yet has become one of the largest holiday rental companies in the world.

By changing their outlook, business leaders can see challenges coming over the horizon or the potential of a fresh approach. This is as true of small businesses as it is of larger ones. In fact, smaller companies often have the advantage it's easier to move fast within a less rigid corporate structure.

However, this process isn't always easy, especially when you're caught up in the daily challenges of work. You need a chance to look at your business from a distance. Could new trends or new technology open the way to new products or business models? Could an existing product work in a market you hadn't previously considered?

Mobile technology can help by giving you the freedom to step away from your desk, slip out of your routine and see your business with new eyes. Portable 2-in-1 devices, such as the Samsung Galaxy Book, enable you to tackle any business task while on the move without losing access to data or your team. The Galaxy Book's 11-hour battery life makes it an indispensable tool for fact-finding missions and discussing new ideas with employees or customers, while the S Pen allows you to take notes in an intuitive way.

This could be invaluable. Sometimes all it takes is a shift of focus to make a company a huge success. Starbucks began as a reseller of espresso makers and coffee beans, but it was only when Howard Schultz saw an alternative future in brewing and selling coffee in branded coffee houses that it became an international phenomenon. William Wrigley Jr was a soap and baking powder salesman who offered free chewing gum with every purchase, before he realised that his gum was becoming more popular than the cleaning products. These business leaders took the time to spot the potential of an idea and had the courage to run with it.

This ability to pivot can change everything. For example, the Manchester-based personalised clothing company, Clothes2order.com, found success by switching from imports to manufacturing and ecommerce a move that has seen the company grow from four people to 150. "Understanding and responding to changes in the industry was key to knowing when to pivot and ensure a successful transformation," said the company's managing director Michael Conway. "You know it's the right time when you can no longer differentiate yourself from your competitors. We decided to reposition the business through ecommerce and personalisation. We haven't looked back since."

Perspective can help you spot the signs that it's time to change. Are there clear and immovable obstacles that prevent you from making further progress? Do your products or services align with customer needs and industry trends? Are you constantly playing catch-up with your competitors? Could you be doing more to support products as they gain traction? How are new companies going to disrupt your industry?

There may be scope to find new revenue streams within the existing business. Claudia Dreier-Poepperl is the CEO and founder of Calldorado, a mobile advertising technology firm. "In my business, we let app developers make money by serving ads in their apps. Doing this with our own apps helped us understand the model better," she said. "In fact, it led us to build a tool that helps developers re-invest their ad revenue into growth and even an app investor club that lets them raise new funds. So that internal insight has really changed the direction of the company."

Of course, shifting focus takes work. You need clear, collective leadership and a company culture that embraces change. You need clarity over what that change will achieve and why, so that you can present a narrative that brings the whole team together. You need the patience to move steadily, so that you don't spoil the existing business, but also the courage and persistence to try new ideas and keep pursuing them even if they don't immediately take off.

Mobile technology isn't just about working anywhere, but what that can do for your perspective and your ability to see the bigger picture. Shake things up and take a break from your routine, and gain the freedom to breathe life into your best ideas.

Conclusion

As a business, you should always keep an open mind, respond proactively to change and explore the many opportunities that mobile technology offers. As William Wrigley Jr found out, a brave shift in focus can set you on a new, far more successful path.

Discover more about how Samsung can help create more good days for small businesses.

Turn to the next page to find out more about how Samsung is engaging with business owners to help fuel innovation and success.

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