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Do You Know These 6 Ways to Combat Stagnation in Business? How do you combat a problem that all business leaders, even the most successful ones, undergo?

By Bhavya Kaushal

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The Ghost of Stagnation bothers not just entrepreneurs but also artists, writers, sports persons, people from all walks of life. In terms of fitness, a plateau is a situation wherein your body starts adjusting to the workout that you are doing. A fitness plateau symbolizes the body not being pushed beyond its limits. Even writers face a plateau, popularly known as the "writer's block" when they are unable to think about any idea to proceed with their writing. In a business plateau, a period of slow or no growth is something that stagnates the firm. A business plateau simply indicates that the firm has not been indulging in any challenging activities. The reasons for stagnation could be plenty-exhaustion, complacency, procrastination, still holding onto conventional ideas and norms, lack of revision of marketing strategies. etc. The important thing is to do something about your current situation. Don't sulk or begrudge, just take charge of your situation. Reach out to your employees so that they too understand the urgency of coming up with something new in order to alter the firm's previous way of functioning. The 6 ways to help you overcome stagnation are:

Change is the key

In any field, change is the most vital thing. To be a good entrepreneur, it is vital to be the first one to adopt change. Change the way you have been running the firm up until now. Dust off the dirt to stop your firm from rusting anymore and take out all the new innovations you have been keeping under the carpet until now. Revisions of marketing strategies, customer services, customer base are some of the ways to break through the deadlock of a business plateau. Rupin Mohan, Director and Chief Technologist at Hewlett Packard Enterprise, shares, "Ability to innovate and then execute to deliver innovations to customers in terms of well designed, quality products and services is the key to break through and grow a business." At a time when entrepreneurs are constantly facing the insecurity of new technology and competitive innovations overpowering their product, Nivedha R.M., CEO and Founder of Trashcon Labs offers a sound advice, "The one sure shot way to avoid stagnancy is by disrupting one's own innovation. Only then can we always be ahead of the rest and a step ahead of our own progress."

Know Thyself

Socrates said, "Know Thyself". Know thyself or know yourself is all about understanding your essential nature as a human being and as an entrepreneur. Knowing yourself means reflecting within and opening up your own Pandora box of strengths and weaknesses. As an entrepreneur, know thyself formula can help you have a better understanding of yourself and the firm. Remember, the firm is a reflection of the entrepreneur's state of mind and inner self. Through the "know thyself" activity both these aspects can be taken care of. Also, have an understanding of what it is that you are really aiming for. Are you in a hurry to somehow get over the slump in business? Are you interested in short term growth or looking at expansion and growth in a way that is going to sustain the tide of times?

Take a vacation

Entrepreneurs often work round the clock without taking a break. This leaves them with little or no time for themselves. Even more so, working continuously slips you into a mundane routine without you even realizing it. A vacation is a nice excuse to indulge in recreational activities and stuff you otherwise don't get to do. When you rejuvenate yourself, you will be able to approach your work with freshness and even get rid of the pre-existing orthodoxies in the firm.

Hard Work

This is definitely a no brainer! Top business leaders have always emphasized that there is no shortcut to success. It's all about hard work, hard work and hard work! Stagnation is a time for any entrepreneur to ask himself or herself questions such as, "Am I working hard enough?", "Are my employees motivated enough to work their hardest?" surely everyone knows the answer. But it is a different thing to know the answer and to confront the answer. Cher Wang, Chairman of HTC, said in 2013 at CNBC's "Managing Asia", "A good leader should have a servant's heart." Based on the conclusions, you can take appropriate action.

Abandon Complacency

Surely, when a business does well, achieves a certain aim or target, the hoopla around often deludes the firm and makes the entrepreneur and his employees complacent. Ankit Mehra,Co-Founder and CEO of GyanDhan says, "'Complacency often results in a decrease in productivity and efficiency. It is critical that companies continue to innovate, empower their employees to think differently, and encourage innovation. The reduction in business life cycles due to the rapid change in technology means that companies should not bask in the glory of their past achievements but find ways to stay on top lest they meet the fate faced by the likes of Nokia, Kodak, ToysRUs, and Blackberry." After the euphoria of an achievement fades, the firm is often left struggling with the growing or changing demands of the market. Thus complacency, a sweet yet perilous tendency must be guarded against at all times.

Stop Procrastinating

An old saying goes like, "Time is Money". This line is extremely famous and has been done to death by Bollywood films but perhaps nobody knows better than an entrepreneur what significance time holds in the realm of business. Quick and prompt action are ways to overcome stagnation. If you, as an entrepreneur find yourself stagnated then perhaps, check this aspect.

Bhavya Kaushal

Former Features Writer

I am a work-in-progress writer and human being. An English graduate from Delhi University, writing is my passion and currently, I was Entrepreneur India's start-up reporter. I love covering start-ups and weaving their stories into unforgettable tales with the power of ink! 
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