Business development secret: everyone has the potential to be an industry leader.
“These leaders are the ones who transform the world—who disrupt their industry and launch massive and positive change,” says Shelley Armato.
Armato is CEO at MySmartPlans, a provider of software as a solution (SaaS) construction technology. She provides professional construction services to business owners in the healthcare, scholastic, government and commercial market sectors throughout the United States.
“Contrary to popular belief, having access to large amounts of money isn’t what makes someone a disruptor,” says Armato. “Money alone isn’t what makes change happen. In reality, tenacity and courage are all you need. By using the internal resources you already have, you can take action today.”
Armato is using her resources to have more impact in the coming year.
“My coming year is focused on impact, going global with my company, and expanding global leadership,” says Armato.
According to Armato, here are ways to be a disruptor in your industry:
Get comfortable with change. “Disruption is all about change. Any company that survives long-term has changed over the years. Whether they added new products or services, catered to a different market, or totally reinvented themselves, they had the courage to morph in some way. Unfortunately, many people get stuck in the vision of what their company was in the past, rather than what it could be in the future.
Look for the common challenges in your industry. “If you want to be an industry disruptor, you need to always be looking to solve challenges—at work as well as at home. In other words, problem-solving must become a way of life, not just something you do when times are tough. Look around and ask yourself, ‘What can I do differently and better?’ Realize that if you think something is challenging or in need of change, chances are that others think that too. Ask your customers and employees what changes they wish would transpire. Then really listen to their answers. Insight leads to change.”
Research everything. “In order to find the problems and the solutions, you need to know what’s going on in your industry at all times. Research solutions that others have tried to introduce. Sometimes disruption isn’t about reinventing the wheel; it’s about making the existing solutions better. Often, even a tenth of a degree improvement can make massive progress. Additionally, do research for your emotional wellness, because when you’re emotionally healthy, you can take on anything. Broaden your research to encompass all aspects of yourself, your business, and your industry.”
Be resilient in your ability to solve problems. “Being a disruptor means being resilient. To build your resilience, refrain from asking disempowering questions like ‘How am I going to do this?’ A better question is ‘Why am I going to do this?’ Why leads to when, and then when becomes how. With your why and when already mapped out, the how becomes much easier and you’re more apt to take that first step. Along the way, you’ll run into roadblocks and rejection. That’s okay. Learn from any setbacks and then harness your resilience to bounce back and keep going.”
The bottom line according to Armato is to decide ahead of time what type of challenges you will allow to disrupt you emotionally. Determine if you’re making decisions emotionally or if you simply need to look at a situation differently. “From that capacity you can take massive action,” she says.