When business freedom comes back to bite you

When business freedom comes back to bite you

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Small companies often bask in the privilege of being fast on their feet — unshackled by corporate culture. However, can companies with few rules start to spiral out of control? Moreover, if so, how can this be avoided?

 

Anyone who’s worked for large, global enterprises will know how refreshing it is to be part of a leadership team at a small company. While SMEs can lack the deep pockets of their corporate counterparts, you can avoid departmental politics, stifling administration and that sense of being lost in the machine.

When new business opportunities come along, you can have a real impact. Decisions get made quickly, plans roll into action, and the results become visible. The sense of satisfaction is enormous, and the financial rewards may be significant too.

However, can all this ‘running free’ go wrong for small companies? Unfortunately, Yes.

 

Where is everyone?

Have you ever been out in the sea on an inflatable or a bodyboard? Maybe you’re enjoying the waves and splashing around with friends. After an hour, you return to shore, only to find everything is different and, worryingly, your clothes are nowhere to be seen!

However, after two minutes of panic, you realise that amid all the noise and excitement, you’d merely drifted. Bit by bit, you’d been swept quietly by the current. You look up and spot your family — 200 metres away.

Unfortunately, there’s a similar scenario that can affect small companies. It could begin to impact any smaller company going through significant business growth and change at any time. So how does it happen?

 

Five steps to chaos

Growing organically as a small company sounds natural and healthy. However,

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