And we’re not sorry to see it go.
Pivoting was what you did when you had spent so much time woo-ing investors that you hadn’t noticed your business model had failed.
It was what you told angry mobs of crowdfunders after you had just banked half-a-million and realised you had completely taken your eye off the ball.
“We’re pivoting / we’ve decided to pivot / don’t panic, but if we pivot into….”
No, no, no!
There are no excuses when it comes to pivoting. Pivoting was a trendy buzzword that had little meaning, unlike, say, due diligence, a minimum viable product or bootstrapping.
These phrases have meaning because they are designed to help us discover if an idea is workable, before we commit funds to it.
Not just our funds, of course, but the funds of angels, VCs, and in the case of crowdfunding, enthusiastic, possibly mis-guided fans of tech.
Pivoting was a bad concept from the outset, borne out of the familiarity of the serial startup founder with failure.
Some wear failure as a badge, bizarrely, of success.
I fail; therefore, I win – next time. If I just turn my business model upside down and enter a new industry sector I really, truthfully, have no clue about, what can possibly go wrong?
A lot, sadly.
So, it’s time to say goodbye to one of the worst buzzwords ever coined. A phrase that struck fear into the heart of any man, woman or child who had placed their faith in you, because you had told them you were going to change the world.
This way. And then that way. Or maybe some other way.
If you must pivot, pivot quietly, pivot in out of the way places, and pivot before you build your MVP. Pivot whilst you “pretotype”, pivot at your kitchen table, pivot before you hire.
Or best of all, don’t pivot at all!
Running a business is hard, but you stand a far better chance of winning if you stick to your principles, and when the tough times come, you fight your way through them.
So, no more pivoting. You’re a big boy now. We’ll have a few more beers. We’ll sort it out somehow.