I heard a great quote yesterday at an event for mentors at Arizona State University. It went as follows:
A start-up is a temporary organization in search of a repeatable, scalable, business model!
There are a lot of messages in this sentence; the key word that stuck with me was search. It may take a business several years to find a “repeatable, scalable, business model.” The important message is to keep looking and trying different business models within all the different components that make up a business.
The four main segments of a business are: marketing, management, operations and finance. Within each of these four main components there exist many options that can be implemented including the development and implementation of your own systems.
Many small business owners start with a business model and then try to fit everything within the confines of that model. There is also a tendency to get comfortable with the first business model and, in many cases, growth turns into stagnation.
A business is like a tree; if it stops growing, it dies. Like a tree, a business may need a different type of “fertilizer” in order to cure a deficit in a given area or to yield more fruit that it has in the past. Likewise, a business needs to be constantly exploring options in marketing, management, finance and operations.
I believe that the reason for the high failure rate among small businesses ( 9 out of 10) is a lack of “search”. When things go wrong closing the business is always the easiest option. The reason for the failure is a lack of belief that there are many more ways to grow a business, seconded by a lack of initiative to find and implement a different approach in one or more of the basic business segment.
A business is always in a start-up-mode! With change being the only constant in every aspect of our lives a search for a better and more efficient way to grow a business is always on the agenda.
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