They say change is as good as a holiday. In the case of The Fish & Chip Co., it’s as good as a menu overhaul. As of April 2014, The Fish & Chip Co. added even more ‘Hot and A lot’ value to the plates and pockets of their customers by refreshing their menu with new meals as well as a whole new menu category, breakfast. The decision to make the changes was not taken lightly, as Managing Executive of The Fish & Chip Co, Jan de Beer, confirms below.
In the business world, brands don’t evolve, improve or remain competitive without change. Change is what keeps it moving forward and relevant in the consumer’s eyes. Brands cannot make changes just for the sake of it, and should base their decision making process on thorough research before anything in the business is tweaked. Change, no matter how minor, could either make or break the brand.
Whether change includes a slight alteration to the way stock is purchased or a major shift in a brand’s consumer focus, change can be implemented for the better, provided it goes hand-in-hand with a clear strategy and objective that considers all stakeholders who will be impacted by its deviations from the norm.
At the Fish & Chip Co., we believe change is good because:
It helps a brand to stay current
In a world where change is the only constant, a brand cannot afford to stagnate. It is imperative to not only keep up with industry trends and stay abreast of competitors, but also to remain exciting and relevant to the consumer and their needs (which are also changing constantly).
By keeping up and move along with customers, the brand is more likely to become more attractive to potential customers and, more importantly, is able to maintain current customers. In The Fish & Chip Co.’s case, even though the brand has seen remarkable growth to date, the strategic decision was made, following extensive research that the brand’s presence needed to be reignited in the minds of consumers. We started by taking an in-depth look at our competitors in the fast food industry, what they were offering, their pricing and how we compared to them. Based on this, we were able to consider what we could do to benefit the brand and our customers, making research a very important step in staying current.
It can encourage innovation
If a business is open to change and embraces it effectively it can foster an environment that encourages innovation among team members. Employees and franchisees are likely to be more open to ‘thinking outside the box’ if change is encouraged and may be more willing to think creatively, which will ultimately promote growth in the business.
It leads to increased efficiency
Even though many fear the prospect of change, its implementation (if done to the betterment of the group) could encourage team members to work more efficiently in their work processes. This in turn can make for more motivated employees as well as satisfied customers.
It lifts morale
Changes in a company can have a positive effect on employee attitudes and morale. The idea of something novel always brings with a sense of refreshed purpose – which is always beneficial in business, as employees do like to see and experience progress themselves. Happy employees = happy customers.
Even with the positives that are linked to change, the negatives can be equally detrimental. The most important thing to note, is that for change to be implemented effectively, collaboration plays a crucial role. A changed culture will only be healthy and effective when all cooperate, which can only happen when all role players have a clear understanding of objectives and the implications these will have on the business. Effective communication plays a vital role in ensuring a smooth transition and support of the alterations going forward, and needs to be executed from the onset of change.
Aside from communication, stakeholders also need to feel that they have been given a regular role in the strategic direction of the system and that their input is considered.
At the end of the day, the acceptance of change and cooperation within a business will come down to trust in leadership. If those in positions of leadership do not offer their employees the right direction and reassurance of their best interest in their own growth, buy-in from employees when it comes to change will not come as easily. Effective leadership and solid relationships are therefore vital in the road to evolvement and progress.
Opinion piece shared by PR Worx.