Wednesday Wisdom: Size does matter!

Well I’m tipping that caught your attention.

Hear me out before you judge the article by it’s title, I was recently reading an article that provided the tip to “Make the most of your small size” when it comes to your business.

The writer pointed out that no business, regardless of  how big or small, can afford to stand still in the products and services it offers. After all if you stand still you are actually going backwards as the rest of the market is moving forward without you – and these days in some industries it is moving considerably faster than it was even a couple of years ago.

However the important thing is to remain positive and of course take action. For those of you out there who are in businesses that fall into the micro to small businesses category, well, we are well-positioned and even fortunate in a lot of cases. Even in particularly difficult times like some of us have experienced the last few years we have the opportunity to and can react quickly to changes in our industries and or the economy – without the need for hundreds of meetings, cutting through red tape, getting sign off by any number of people higher in the organisation etc etc.

To illustrate, a conversation springs to mind that I had in a past business life in which I was an Operations Manager for an Australian Branch of a global business. Fortunate enough to have a great, very accessible Divisional Director at the time, we would have indepth business discussions. On one occasion when I was feeling particularly challenged about how to effect change that I believed needed to occur quickly within the organisation to help add value, I remember Richard telling me, “Tom, you’re like a speed boat – you want to be able to change direction quickly and either react or pursue opportunities in and for the business as quickly as you physically can. Whereas our company is more like an Oil Tanker, we are a big ship, with a lot of people and processes and it can take hours to plan, set-up and change direction”.

Now there are certainly pro’s and con’s to both being a larger business and a smaller business. However, in small business if we see challenges ahead, we can quickly slow down to minimise or more importantly avoid any collusion that could potentially sink our boat. But more importantly if we spot an opportunity in the market we are more often than not in a better position to have the flexibility and capability to quickly steer port (left) or starboard (right) and capitalise on it.

No matter the size of your business, it’s important to continually review your business, the economy and your marketplace, and to then be proactive. Chart and where possible implement pre-emptive changes that will help to ensure you survive and sail through any stormy weather and rough seas – and more importantly sail or motor (for the power boat lovers) into growth mode.

Remember, don’t miss an opportunity to promote and grow your business.

Tom Dickson

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