The irony in business

I’ve spent a significant amount of time in both small business and big business environments. And the over riding conclusion I’ve come to is this:

Big Business is about the small picture.


Small Business is about the big picture.

While it seems unlikely, this irony is true for most of the people involved in either scenario. Big business due to their success and size split the tasks up into tiny little pieces. “Mary is responsible for new product development of our fat free, individually wrapped, cheese slices for the South West region”. The people become cogs in a machine that is so big the world becomes obscured. While in startups and small business we are responsible for, well everything from customer complaints, to invoicing, to media interviews.

So before we transition from big business into a startup, it pays to pay attention to the big picture because all too often when we ‘grow up’ working for big companies we lose sight of the real world we operate in.


5 thoughts on “The irony in business

  1. So, so true. What’s worse we A) fool ourselves that BIG business provides more security (yeh right) and B) We become accustomed to only work with big budgets and think its impossible to do anything with less than $1M!

    One of my favorite brands to work on had the mantra ‘feel small, grow big’ and actually had ‘small company feel’ in its essence. Fair to say it led to a great culture AND results.

    Sharp as ever, nice read!

  2. Definetely true – and it takes five times longer to get anything done in a big business – because you need so many more people to agree to it and therefore they become risk averse and nothing new happens!

  3. … and they could get away with it when the barriers to entry were so high… but now they are at massive risk because everything is up for grabs with a new world that has low entry costs.


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