Dell is a company that truly revolutionized its industry. Dell was the master of direct sales by 2005 it was valued at $100 billion--more than Apple and HP combined at the time.

But then the price of PCs went down, Dell's competitors began to outsource their manufacturing, and started coming up with sleek new machines to sell in their fancy stores.

But Dell stuck with direct sales selling ignoring the changing market. Very quickly it began losing market share.

Dell tried to innovate but it was too little too late. It launched a series of marketing strategies, even dabbling in retail spots. None made an impact.

Ironically, three years before the iPad was launched, Dell had developed a tablet for the Japanese market. But it decided not to go ahead and keep focusing on products where it could leverage its supply chain expertise. Had it invested in tablets earlier, it may have better been able to address the challenges of the iPad.

The secret of Dell's success had become a burden. Dell had trained for the wrong race. As Marshall Goldsmith says 'What got you here won't get you there'. So how do you recognize the need to pivot?

5 ways you to make sure you are ready for the pivot

  1. Your employees are able to disagree with you. You appreciate another point of view.

  2. You spend time helping to prepare your team for tomorrow's growth not just executing today's work better.

  3. You balance out following processes with giving your team freedom to being creative and innovate.

  4. You regularly listen to your customers. You make make a routine of outside-in thinking

  5. You regularly review what your competitors are doing. You look for linkages between changing customer needs and market conditions.