Show up differently


Showing up differently in a word is to innovate. Innovation is defined as making changes in something established, especially by introducing new methods, ideas, or products. I have encountered many organisations which have relied on their tried and tested ways and though they may have worked in the past, more can be done. Most businesses go from year to year giving customers or members that same old service in the same old way.

The beauty of innovation is that it can be something small, something that makes people experience you differently.

The BMF young professionals’ provincial executive committee (PEC) for Gauteng went through a time when it felt its events weren’t really speaking to its members. The team realised that they had been providing the same Forums each year not only with the same people as key note address but at the same venues as the rest of the organisation for several years now.

Our plan of action for the year was well thought out and all the programs we had planned were great, in fact anyone who didn’t attend would have really missed out. We still couldn’t reach our members in spite of this. It appeared we couldn’t communicate this to them in a way that we could solicit buy-in from them. It was then that the team decided to position itself differently in the minds of its members.

We changed our venues, created new content and began looking at new speakers, people with whom our members identified with and what they wanted to become. To anchor this new change, we began conducting mini surveys after each event. The responses have been positive as we take their suggestions and keep evolving. Our members took notice and we started getting their attention.

It is when you change something that something changes, this is the lesson we learnt in coming up with programs for young professionals. We realised that when planning our programs we need to begin with ourselves internally as an organisation and understand ourselves better. There is merit to conducting a competitor analysis however, we found that this is more of a sense check as our competitors don’t sit with us in our boardrooms they are out there trying to be the best at what they do in spite of us.

They are creating new thinking; new ideas and clients/members go there because they find value in the innovation. The PEC also began to understand that our members are tapped into global sources of information and thinking we could just keep going using our old ways to relate to them was really undermining to them.

Eldeman, the world’s largest public relations company understands this and it believes that one cannot stay successful simply by doing things the same way, no matter how well these ways have fared in the past. They suggest that to evolve and to be a step ahead of the competition is the only way to be relevant and breakthrough in today’s times.

The world is changing continually, competition is global and so are ideas. In order to thrive it is crucial to be courageous enough to show up differently and change the game.

A few tips from Eldeman on showing up differently;

  • Allow your mind to explore
  • Shake up your surroundings
  • Put method to madness
  • Indulge your curiosity
  • Create new opportunities

Go out there and show up differently, it will do wonders for you!


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