This morning, Mark Price, Waitrose’s Managing Director announced:
“We are in a period of unprecedented investment and this will have an impact on the profit we report next month.”
Across the Atlantic, Jeff Bezos, Amazon’s CEO, is under pressure to scale back investment and start to make profits. Bezos has been investing in phones, online grocery delivery and yesterday announced a further $2 Billion commitment to the Indian market to accelerate growth.
Mark Price and Jeff Bezos are two examples of leaders who understand that you must not stand still. They are committing themselves and their businesses to the future.
In our business, we see some interesting trends. We have never had so many customers on our books, and are pleased to be working across a wide range of sectors. Projects are focused on building future capabilities, as leaders recognize that due to the recession they have underinvested in key capabilities such as people development and their own change capability. Ironically, these 2 levers are key to unlocking benefits from their own internal investments. (BTW – best in class companies only generate an average of 80% of planned benefits from projects, a sobering thought).
Reflecting on our business, we have continued to invest since our inception in September 2008. We continually invest in our team and partners; are building our Curium Learning academy; and we have a fantastic Non Executive on the way. We also share the same thinking as Mr Price and Bezos and are looking forward to the next 5 years.
It is an interesting business environment we are in. For example, if you are swayed by the doom and gloom of the supermarkets, then you may be at risk of battening down the hatches, cutting prices and at best standing still.
Hmm….mind you, isn’t that what some of the supermarkets have done, and look what happened when Aldi and others started to invest in the future? Alarmingly for the new CEOs at the likes of Tesco and Sainsbury’s, we hear that Amazon is progressing its online grocery business too!
So, my question to you is: “Are you going to stick or twist and invest for tomorrow?”