local value

Some people in Belgium and the Netherlands are protesting against covid measures for different reasons. Even though the extent to which liberties have been limited are fundamentally different, both in severity and duration, some protesters claim the measures are too draconian.

Driving through the entire region (Belgium and the Netherlands) takes but a couple of hours. Regardless of the region’s small size, cultural differences occur logically.

In business, as in life, your service or product’s desired effect may be perceived differently within different subsets of your population, even in a tiny geographical region.

If a can of Coke tastes different around the world, it’s recommendable for all businesses alike to continuously ask for feedback throughout different segments of your customer base.

perfect doesn’t work

In an imaginary perfect world, many businesses would cease to exist. What’s an enterprise if not a vehicle to created (added) value. Arguably, in a perfect world, with all our wishes and desires fulfilled, there wouldn’t be a need to add value.

Production processes, especially mechanical ones, do, however, thrive on perfectionism. Initiatives such as lean six sigma are helpful to prevent variation and waste. When an automobile or technology maker messes up their production process, the cost for faulty parts and rebooting production is immense.

For more people-driven processes, it’s definitely worthwhile trying to eliminate errors. By stimulating communication and knwoledge, in combination with the right culture, there is a chance that less mistakes will be made.

Trying to perfect a predominantly people-driven process is costly. So much so that the cost outweighs the benefits. Aim for; as good as possible, but allow a margin for error. After all, done is better than perfect.

mannerless meeting

“Two pizza meetings” and other, almost mythical approaches on how to have the very best meeting are well documented. While there certainly are pitfalls to avoid and initiatives that boost productivity, claiming that there is one set of rules that applies to each and every company is hard to believe.

What follows is mentality or mindset. One that I, for one, would like to see gain popularity.

Staying in a meeting without any contribution to the meeting at all is rude. Even if considered mannerless, those who don’t contribute to the meeting should leave.

corporate personality

Companies have feelings too, determined by their personalities.

For small companies, let’s say five to twenty-five people, the company’s personality will be an amalgam of every individual personality working with the company. What’s true of personality is also true of culture. Cultures can’t be enforced or artificially created.

Some say people barely ever change. Apart from severe trauma, nothing impacts our personality in such a way that we change fundamentally overnight. Granted, we can be made aware of certain behaviors and then train our responses, should we want to make slight alterations to our personality.

Companies, on the other hand, have more ways of actively steering their personality. Depending on the brand, certain types of personalities might make more sense. Should your brand be perceived as funny, cocky, bold, serious, humble?

There is no right or wrong. However, standing out in a crowd, or saturated market for that matter, probably doesn’t happen by being bland.

Regardless of which characteristics you wish to see translated into your company, integrity and humility always win.