I was at a fantastic business session today hosted by The Cambridge Norwich Tech Corridor, it was in a conversation that it came to question – do some Norfolk businesses know just how great they truly are? The fact that truly great businesses exist cannot be in question, if you want to find inspiring Norfolk based businesses, you don’t have to look very far. The real question is, do we really believe it today?
You may ask, why is this poignant for this post? What does it matter, and ultimately, why do you at Akcela care? Well, the reason for all of these questions is simple. In order to Be. Greater. – the very foundation of what we look to achieve at Akcela, we have to acknowledge in the very first instance that actually in Norfolk, we are great.
The Cambridge Norwich tech corridor discussions are raising genuine, “world building” questions today, but world building is all about tomorrow (don’t get me wrong, there is a lot being done for today, but in the context of this meeting, it was about tomorrow). If you’re interested in reading about economic clusters, a good starting place is the legendary HBR document on Clusters and the New Economics of Competition. Whilst those conversations undoubtedly need to be had. My focus is back to this point. What’s holding us back from realising the Great and moving to Be. Greater in the short term.
I overheard in conversation two very good points that can hold a company back from changing their approach, or direction. These aren’t my views, but I felt it good to express them from people who have experienced them.
This is the best way I can articulate this conversation. It’s a mindset piece, and whilst I struggled to understand it at first, it became clear where it is born from. If we identify a change, are we admitting the current state is inadequate?
Perhaps the mindset we need to adapt, is that as a business, our differentiator has driven us to this point. In changing we aren’t failing with what we have previously achieved, but deciding to continue to deliver in a new guise. We should applaud the current state, but be accepting and driven to adapt.
For me, this was an incredibly well thought out, well articulated and passionate conversation. I couldn’t have agreed more.
Sometimes, we can accept that things are great, but be happy with the current state, whilst dreaming of improvement. The truth is, if we want to Be. Greater. we have to drive that improvement. Some may think it is out of reach, but actually, it is there if we want to achieve it. That decision has to be taken though, it won’t take itself.
Do either of these sound like conversations you’ve had before?