Miller’s Monday Morning Message
presented by ACM Consulting Inc.
Andrew Miller on operational excellence, strategy, life balance and everything in between
Toronto – April 28, 2014
We always read about these organizations and they sound like such fun places to work. On-site chef, mini-golf courses in the office, slides to get from one floor to another. But what happens when those organizations grow? Can they maintain that fast-paced, fun, entrepreneurial culture? Some can, but most don’t. Here are five start up characteristics that the most successful organizations, large or small, are able to employ:
- No fear of failure – Most young organizations aren’t afraid to fail and encourage it as a way to improve how they do business. As organizations grow, they tend to become more risk averse because there’s more at stake.
- Cross trained employees – Start ups don’t have the luxury of lots of employees so people have to be able to handle multiple roles. Larger organizations don’t cross train enough and tend to consolidate knowledge within too few people.
- Passion for the outcome – Young companies have employees who are very passionate about the organization and what it is trying to accomplish. This usually comes from a combination of an energetic leader and a shared vision of what can be done. As organizations grow, that passion can wane.
- Lack of complacency – Start up organizations can’t afford to be complacent or they will fail early. The larger an organization becomes, the more complacent it becomes.
- Lack of bureaucracy – Smaller, younger companies have not yet had to deal with internal bureaucracy because decisions are usually made quickly by the founders or owners. As organizations grow, they need to implement a certain level of discipline, but many mistake that discipline for the creation of bureaucracy.
As organizations grow, they tend to add layers of people and many new functions. but it’s important to remember some of the characteristics that helped the organization become successful in the first place.
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