Unless your target markets are Sahara or the South Pole, your business activities require interaction with various other parties.
Vendors, customers, partners, public authorities, competitors, financial institutions and economic centers, lobbies and political elites, opinion makers and decision takers, unpredicted 3-party influences, social groups and, of course, family and friends…
It seems that doing business requires some serious social skills. Either directly or indirectly, either you want it or not, your business participates in a Labyrinth of B2X relationships (where X equals anything from a Customer to your Mother-in-law).
Globalization made the Labyrinth vast and technology made it chameleonic. In the following 10 minutes, your next customer can be a Tuareg nomad placing an order through his sand-proof tablet or a South Pole expedition scientist skyping you from his …e-gloo.
Basically, the Labyrinth is an uncontrollable and dynamic force of relationships that emerge, grow, strengthen, succeed or fail. The relationships are so many that it is impossible for a single company (exclude Oil-and-Gas giants) to pull the Labyrinth strings to its own benefit.
Nevertheless, this chaos of relationships brings one unexpected ally by your side: Statistics. The more chaotic the Labyrinth is, the more slim success-chances each business has, the more random the success-chances distribution is, the more equal the success-chances are amongst the competitors to reach the peak of Fortune-500. Statistically, in this Labyrinth, every business can make it to the top: there is an Ariadne’s string for everyone.
Every entrepreneur’s dream is mathematically supported, but, alas, don’t let that relief overwhelm you. One thing is to hold the string and another thing is to pull it.
There are many factors that can define the positive outcome of a string pull. Financial strength, innovation, smartly targeted marketing, social benefit to name a few. However, I believe the most important factor is timing, because all business are “Business In Medias Res” (BIMR).
Business in the midst of things.
The Labyrinth preexists your business ventures, so your business enters in the midst of things. Each time you make an entrepreneurial move (introduce a product, rent an asset, merge with a company, promote discounts, visit a customer, you name it) you are upsetting the pre-established entropy of the Labyrinth’s B2X relationships and you are provoking reactions.
Imagine it as if you are entering a vortex: inevitably you will swirl along. The important thing is to pick the correct time for initiating your BIMR.