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We Did The Impossible

“You quickly discover that future success requires skills and capabilities… you don’t have.

Revenue > Talent

If you are lucky enough to have a ‘growth problem’, you will soon realize that large equal’s more complexity and bureaucracy. According to James Allen (Bain & Co.), some common mistakes made during this stage include;

  1. Creating a Heroes Manual: Capturing the past rules of thumb, decision-making processes, and procedures in a Bible of procedure. This is done in the understanding that the Bible will work in the future (a mistake).
  2. Hiring Administrators: Recruiting people to administer systems, but don’t know how to create them (cautious and rule-bound managers).
  3. Harmonization: Founders begin to harmonize everything; pay packages, job descriptions, supply contracts, pricing, service levels, and committees…). More often than not this results in erosion of the original mission.

What To Avoid

In order to avoid the debilitating impact of the above actions, during this stage of the startup-to-enterprise journey, the founders would be better served to consider the following:

  1. Core Strategy: Link all efforts (administration, hiring etc.), to a well defined core strategy, and organizational ability to deliver on that strategy.
  2. Development of Heroes: Place heroes in roles of increasing responsibility and diversity, in order that they can develop themselves as managers & leaders.
  3. The 20% Rules: Encourage some rule bending (20/80), if it serves the purpose of the mission (benefits customers), and help the heroes to become coaches for newly recruited personnel (sharing the wisdom of when and how to break rules).
  4. Black Sheep: Recruit some incumbent personnel who thrive in chaos, and a lack of bureaucracy, yet they still act in a professional manner most of the time.
Source: James Allen (Harvard Business Review)

Founders Mentality (4:00)

James Allen (Bain & Co.)

To win in the long term startups scale.

NOTE: video starts & stops at pre-assigned times

Curse of the Matrix (4:30)

James Allen (Bain & Co.)

What happens, that blows you off track?

NOTE: video starts & stops at pre-assigned times

Course Curator: Dr. Gerard L. Danford

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