29 April 2014

One of the interesting things about entrepreneurs is their desire to always find new ways of improving things; it’s in their nature and it’s often integral to their success. However, I’d also argue that this same characteristic can be a bit of a double edged sword. As an entrepreneur, it can trip you up if you’re not careful…

The biggest disruptor of success, in my opinion, is changing a winning formula. You can get so obsessed with improving something that you overlook the fact that it’s already working incredibly effectively. It can also happen when you take on a consultant to advise you on your business.

Learning about winning formulas from the British Cycling team!

Learning about winning formulas with the British Cycling team!

My own experience of this isn’t too bad. Some suggestions they make are worth listening to, especially when they’re coming from someone who has had success with bigger businesses, but what works for one organisation won’t work for them all. Prescriptive business strategies, while effective for some, don’t work for us. This is why it’s so important to be careful about who you take advice from.Much of the time, someone out on the floor, at the heart of your business, will be in a better position to come up with solutions or ideas than a consultant coming at it from the outside. I’d suggest canvassing opinion from as many people as you can and distilling it into your own version that works for you and your team. It’s healthy to encourage people within the business to share ideas and formulate plans. If something is working well and they’re happy with it, they’re likely to tell you this. Often, they are the best, yet perhaps the most overlooked source of advice.

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