Oliver Dax is Managing Director of Monkey’s Paw Consultancy Ltd and has been in the world of Business Development for over 25 years. The idea behind Monkey’s Paw was to create a new kind of Sales Consultancy that not only offered genuinely helpful guidance for small B2B businesses, but one that did not walk away from the client just as the help was needed the most. Below Oliver shares with us his thoughts on evolution not revolution.
Doctor Marten’s boots have been a staple since my days as a punk back in the late 70’s. Yes, I had the mohican and yes, mine was canary yellow. Fact.
Back then it felt like DM’s came in pretty much black or cherry red. Forty years on, the range is extensive and catering for men, women and children in a multitude of styles, colours and designs. For the record, I do not work for Doctor Marten’s footwear even though it sounds like I might.
So today’s little billet-doux is on the subject of ‘evolution not revolution’.
It was Charles Darwin that said “It is not the strongest of the species that survive, nor the most intelligent, but the one most responsive to change”. And you know what, he was right.
Trying things and failing at them is a massive part of any business plan. Ask Richard Branson, Bill Gates or Donald Trump to name but three. But so is letting market forces steer you away from your plotted course sometimes. Natural evolution perhaps.
There are times when you just have to take a leap of faith and the plans you thought you had will naturally evolve into something else. Often something quite different.
Peugeot are a classic example of a successful business who tried many things. Succeeded and failed in equal measure some might say.
In their time, they have manufactured coffee mills, pepper grinders, umbrellas, saw blades, bicycles and now cars. Who knows what they will manufacture next, Les Docteur Marten modèle chaussures perhaps? (Apologies for my frankly appalling schoolboy French).
I suppose today’s message from the pulpit is to try to let evolution flow naturally. The market place knows what it wants and sometimes it tells you loud and clear. Though hearing the message is not always easy. It can happen in a very short space of time sometimes. Explore the options that are often something you never even thought of. It’s a brave man that does that as it is in our nature to retain control and be utterly convinced that our original plan was right. Well, it might be, but if Peugeot had stuck to their original plan, they’d still be making pepper grinders. If Richard Branson had stuck to his original plan, we wouldn’t have Virgin Atlantic.
Do I expect Monkey’s Paw to be doing in five years time what it does today? Absolutely not. I’m excited to see where fate will lead it. External forces may ultimately decide what we are doing then, and if it’s manufacturing pepper mills or colourful leather boots, then that might not be the worst thing!
This article was written by Oliver Dax.