Creating a break-through company
Thursday, January 31, 2008/
It’s great to have passion – but true passion leads to a certain level of stability. And only then can your business hope to grow.
I wish I had a dollar for every time people said to me “I wish I thought of that” or “I was going to do that” or “Why didn’t I do that?” They are often referring to the RedBalloon idea of experience vouchers.
The reality is RedBalloon was not the first experience voucher supplier on the planet, but we sure have carved out a lovely space for ourselves in the crowded gift giving market. When people ask me who are our competitors I respond “Myer and David Jones gift cards – in fact any retail gift cards”. Try having competitors that are big and scary – but they don’t even know you exist.
I ponder this because I was recently asked is it better to have a break-through company (and new idea) or improve on an existing idea.
I don’t believe it is about being the coolest or most innovative product. In fact there are many examples of great products that never make it. Developing a market for a completely new concept can be very expensive and time consuming. Then once people are finally educated on why this is such a fabulous innovation someone will come along and copy it.
I don’t mean to sound defeatist here – it is more a matter of knowing what you are signing up for. Unless someone innovates we are never going to move the game forward. You have to choose if you want a revolutionary businesses or an evolutionary one.
In any industry there is opportunities to break through the way things have always been done and create something new. It is not the idea however, but the execution that will make it successful. Business success is 1% the idea and 99% execution. Imagine if Google had merely chosen to give every person on the planet access to information instantly – but the servers kept failing.
According to Keith R McFarland who recently wrote in Inc. magazine: “High-performing companies we looked at had one thing in common – they were almost all run for many, many years by their founders. But these entrepreneurs don’t share a common personality type, and they do not create businesses where there is a focus on the personal characteristics of the entrepreneur.”
As you know I have always talked about the passion for a business idea – you cannot fake it until you make it. But passion must lead to process, and ultimately dramatic stability. Only with dramatic stability can you ever have dramatic growth.
Naomi Simson is the founder and CEO (Chief Experiences Officer) of RedBalloon Days, Naomi is passionate about pleasure! Backed by enthusiasm, energy and drive and recently named one of Australia’s best bosses (Australia’s Marketing Employer of Choice), the Entrepreneurs Organisation (Sydney Chapter) President 2007 – 2008 and mother of two, Naomi also inspires others as a regular speaker, writes a blog and has recently completed her first book. To read more Naomi Simson blogs, click here.