Swearingen Communications Insights

Fresh ideas, seasoned perspectives, and solid marketing strategies to keep you grounded and growing.


Keeping Clients Amid all the Creative Destruction

A recent column by Washington Post columnist George F. Will, entitled “The Glory of Chaos,” discusses creative destruction.  Examples of creative destruction are evident in the demise of many once-revered brands and the rise of new, progressive innovations. Encyclopaedia Britannica, Kodak moments, and the Sears and Roebuck catalog are a few of the casualties.  In large part because they were so successful, these companies could neither anticipate nor imagine a Sam Walton, an Amazon, a Wikipedia.

Quoting author Virginia Postrel, Will goes on to say that today’s culture is made up of those who relish the status quo, and those who welcome the “perpetual churning of society by dynamism.”  That is, to what degree do each of us cling to well-known institutions, even bureaucracies, rather than accept the “messy chaos” that often defines the dynamic age in which we live?

I work with many buttoned-down, highly educated professionals.  The majority have advanced degrees.  They are established and successful.  It is my job to help them continue to attract and retain valued clients.  More and more, I find myself prodding them to step closer to the “messy chaos” of our digital world, and figure out how best to engage with clients.  Both traditionally and online.

Their clients haven’t stopped searching for services, products, and news.  Yet they have forever changed they way they search and locate.  And they’ve never had so many options to compare and contrast.

How will each of us handle this shifting competitive landscape?  Our attitude will likely determine our future success.   Being nimble, viewing change as opportunity, and taking action sooner rather than later, are three disciplines that will serve us well.