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Bruce Lee-Style Resilience in the Face of Disruption

April 27, 2020
Posted by Scott Leisler

Disruption is nothing new to business, but disruption on this scale makes it feel like you’re being suffocated. Sucker-punched even. Rationally, we know we’ll get through this, but emotionally, it feels like every area of our lives is under attack, and rightfully so.

One of my favorite all-time expressions, my mantra, is from the 1986 martial arts movie starring Jean-Claude van Damme and Kurt McKinney “No Retreat, No Surrender.” I won’t spoil the movie for you if you haven’t seen it, but let’s just say that Bruce Lee comes back to life from the other side and begins training the main character, Jason, so that he can take on the local bullies, and help his Dad overcome the threatening crime syndicate that’s causing them a ton of problems. Sounds good right?

No Retreat. No Surrender.

Think about it. “No Retreat, No Surrender.” Process the attitude. Decipher it. Aside from the fact that it would make one mean T-shirt, it says one other important thing—KEEP PUSHING FORWARD.

Disruption means having to pivot and rethink your brand experience. The short-term strategy becomes the tactical playbook. The long-term strategy is still important, but today it’s about finding secure footing.

Core values are more defining than ever. Brands that are honest and empathetic, with the ability to adapt, will survive and prosper. Those that appear tone-deaf or are out of character will be dismissed with a lack of authenticity.

Deep uses of technology will be further embraced to alleviate strains on relationships.

Here’s just a few that will continue to evolve:

• Increased emphasis on content development
• Greater social listening and business intelligence
• Customer service via social media
• More open source solutions
• Virtual experiences
• Artificial intelligence and chat
• Increased video storytelling and communications
• E-learning
• Reprioritization of paid media channels
• Team project management tools

The heavy feeling we all have, it’s hard to get rid of, there’s a lot to do. But just like the reincarnated Bruce Lee when he helped Jason train to take on the bad guys, we’re here and we believe through resilience we find shared strength.

On behalf of the entire Dovetail team, we appreciate you and our relationship.

If there’s anything we can help you talk through, big or small, we are here.

No Retreat. No Surrender.

Scott Leisler, Dovetail President & Chief Creative Officer

Dovetail is a specialized brand communication agency dedicated to helping clients find confidence in the face of disruption, overcome obstacles and seek new opportunities in times of uncertainty.

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