Small businesses can innovate faster than big businesses.
Iran is building drones that fire ship-killing missiles while nerds with laptops launch business-crippling cyberattacks. The English longbow defeated the heavily armored French knight. “Two thousand pounds of education,” Kipling lamented of British officers shot down by rifle-wielding Pashtun fighters, “Drops to a ten-rupee jezail.”
Problem-solving restores performance to a set standard. Leaders who fixate on it do not move their organizations forward — they create yo-yos.
Innovation, on the other hand, takes you to new heights. The medieval English had a significant disadvantage: the French knights could outspend them on armor and thus win battles. Instead of investing in better armor, the English invested in the longbow and archers and invented tactics to enhance their effect. The Battle of Agincourt showed the innovation’s devastating effects.
Who’s helping you innovate so that your people, processes, and products give you a competitive advantage or make you distinct in the field?
Small businesses win when they think like David, not like Goliath.