Business basics

Over the years of experience in business we have evolved a philosophy that revolves around some very basic concepts.

Here is a collection of articles we have written which are a sampler of the Aventure philosophy:

 

Introduction - Business is Simple

Business is simple. It really is. Which makes it such a mystery that so many business owners manage to make such a mess of something so simple. There are businesses which are stars. They excel at looking after their customers. They produce great products and services. Their staff enjoy their jobs. And they make money. But then there are businesses which routinely struggle to pay their bills, have constant staff turnover and have to find new customers to replace the ones who have left. And then their failure becomes terminal.

The Basics of Business

The very core of most business is that it is about people. Without people you don’t have a business – it’s that simple. But even more basic to the concept of a business is that there is a person who provides the spark, the drive and the impetus to make it happen. Without that person, and often they are called an entrepreneur, sometimes a leader, or maybe just “the boss”, ultimately the business will fail – or at worst meander along to mediocrity. And to me mediocrity is little better, if at all, than failure.

It's not about the money

What is it that motivates people? What is it that makes us want to get out of bed in the morning and want to invest our energy in doing something? Other than the fact that for most of us we have to, in order to put food on the table and a roof over our heads, invariably winners do it for reasons other than money. For some it is the challenge of being first, or best, or making their dream a reality, or perhaps even about building an empire. For many it is about proving their capabilities to themselves – proving they have what it takes.

The best companies invariably have the best people

The opposite of this is that the worst companies have the worst people. Failing businesses I have gone into invariably have people who don’t want to be there, with bad attitudes, few skills, and are badly lead and managed. They may not be bad people, but the circumstances they find themselves in combine to ensure they invest their skills and energy elsewhere. They will be on the phone to their mates, texting under the desk, and sneaking longer breaks whenever they can. And that’s just when they are taking time out from trying to find a better job – where they get more money for doing less.

What is a business?

In order to know why a business is successful – or why it fails – we need to know what exactly a business is. We all know what a job is. The common notion, especially in those economies where small businesses rule, is that ownership of a small business is like having a job and being the boss at the same time.

The little stuff does matter

Someone else once said that leopards never change their spots. They were both right. Simply by walking into a business you can gain a good indication of what financial and organizational shape the business is in from the entranceway or foyer. Intentionally or not those first few steps give the game away. They will tell you whether anyone cares. They will tell you whether anyone in the organization bothers to attempt to see themselves through others’ eyes.

Lead from the front

In order to know why a business is successful – or why it fails – we need to know what exactly a business is. We all know what a job is. The common notion, especially in those economies where small businesses rule, is that ownership of a small business is like having a job and being the boss at the same time.

The law of reciprocity

The law of reciprocity simply states that "what goes round - comes round", or, to put it another more positive way "you get out what you put in".