In previous eras, production involved a great deal of human analysis and estimation. Based on that, leaders of companies would produce a product and then ship it off to stores while television, print, and radio ads worked to push the consumer to the store to purchase the product. It could be profit or a loss depending on consumer reaction, and though based on statistics available, it was very much a risk.
In today’s market, an interesting shift has taken place. With the advent and speed of social media and the highly advanced market research technology behind it all, it is possible to sell an idea well before it becomes a tangible product, and to know with good certainty that it will sell. In fact, it is not uncommon to sell before the product or program exists at all.
This idea of racing to the end result and THEN backing up to deliver (doing business backwards) is related to this new speed of business, and it is a definite challenge for large businesses.
“Speed is becoming the biggest challenge in business — whether it’s execution of ideas, changes in the market and consumer behavior, or the 24-hour cycle of news and social media. Those that are fast to respond increase their chance of growth and success exponentially.” – Tobias Wilhelm, business consultant and coach
This is where small business owners have an advantage.
- With less bureaucracy, they can make faster decisions.
- With fewer full-time employees and more access to a freelance talent pool, they can get more done in less time.
- With newer technology, they can create efficiencies on a cloud-based system.
- With an attitude of embracing change, they can take advantage of new opportunities quickly.
This being an election year, there is much discussion about big business and how to create more big businesses in our country. The discussion has merit – we need the great manufacturing companies to return. We need the high tech companies to return. We need the commodities sector to return.
But we need the big companies to take a lesson from the smaller companies, too.
What if you operated a large company with the principles noted above, would it work? Many would say, “It can’t be done.”
The statement begs one question, “What about Amazon?”
Amazon is a big company with a small business mindset, and it works.
Whether or not the speed of business is sustainable for the long haul remains to be seen. But one thing is clear. To at least some degree, large companies must adapt to small business thinking in order to succeed. Ironic though it seems, large businesses thinking small and doing business backwards may be what it takes to move forward.
To learn more about how small business thinking can benefit your large corporation, contact renowned business consulting expert, Deb Ingino. Having created success in both large and small business, Deb knows the tools and strategies you need in order to compete.