Small Companies, Please Stop Imitating

Abandon your scared mindset, stop comparing, and please stop imitating yourself to the biggest company in your space. Because if your big strategy is to look exactly like the big corporate companies, then congratulations on becoming the junior version of them.

McLaren Group, currently valued at £2.4bn, making it one of the most valuable private companies in the UK, was once a startup. There are many lessons to be learnt in this single question-answer exchange during an interview with Bruce McLaren (founder of the company):

GORDON (the interviewer):
Bruce, you’re competing on the world’s motor racing circuits, and beating people who’ve got far, far more money to spend than you have. Would you be much better if you had four or five times as much money to spend?

No. We’d probably get in a terrible mess
You can get too big as a racing team, and you could get involved and hidebound. You’ve got to be able to move quickly if you’re going to be competitive. But the actual care with which pieces are put together is very important. Something done incorrectly or assembled in a hurry can be very dangerous.

Put your story, your passion, your drive, your “why” in front and center. Customers will connect to your passion and be convinced to bet on a company where they will be treated as a person, and not as a number.

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