Teaching Goliath how to use a sling…

Two recent experiences showed me the blatant contrast between large companies and budding startups, and how they can be bridged to bring strength, agility and focus to any business. I will share some of my and their leaders observations in this post and a few others in the next weeks.

Last March, I helped the executive team of an integrated resort and casino refine their vision and strategy for a breakthrough in their business, and structure this transformation of the way they deliver service. Talk about a beast: thousands of staff, half a dozen hotels, several casinos, food and beverages you cannot count, shopping for days, entertainment for nights, you name it. For obvious reasons, we will leave the name out, as well as any information that could identify the organization, although I was really impressed by their leadership team.

At the other end of the spectrum, I witnessed from afar the birth in Silicon Valley of a startup you will likely hear about in the next couple of years, Sutoiku. This is the newest venture from Ismael Chang Ghalimi (Intalio). I had the pleasure to meet the gentleman twice when he was starting Intalio, a now leader in BPM, and always read his blogs with pleasure. I stumbled upon one of his recent posts last night on LinkedIn, and went to bed at 4:30am after reading the entire log of his newest project. Go check it at Sutoiku. I am excited just thinking about it!

To have a sense of the contrast: the resort has more hotels to manage than Sutoiku has people in their team! The differences are obvious, and we will obviously not discuss these ones. What we will discuss is what the resort should learn from Ismael, and the host of other entrepreneurs who make big differences within self-imposed boundaries and constraints of reality. A number of differences came out with strong signals ; here are a few: how to innovate, what to innovate on, how to work together, how to define and engage prime audience (the ones who pay, you know…), how to measure progress, etc. For reasons that will become clear later, I will start with how to innovate in the next post.

Bye for now…

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