Pick up any management or leadership book and you'll undoubtedly read about the importance of innovation, of thinking outside the box, stepping out of one's comfort zone, or taking a radical and bold approach. Such authors will warn against incrementalism (doing what you've always done, but just doing it a little better), and preach the need to embrace creative destruction (where your goal is to destroy your own business with superior products, services and marketing before someone else has the chance to).
Tom Peters tells us it's our job to reinvent and re-imagine the very nature of our businesses, and there is tremendous wisdom in this advice. The mantra for the 21st century seems to be: "Change before you're forced to."
It's tempting to dispel this advice with the notion that there isn't much you can do in your business that is revolutionary. After all, you're just going to run cows and sell the calves in the fall, just like everyone else.
Sometimes, we forget that being radical and differentiating ourselves is, more often than not, simply just doing all the little things exceptionally well. It's the combination of these little things that can make a radical difference.
Study the market leaders -- the businesses that are really growing -- and you'll find about as many approaches as you find businesses. But there is one trait they share -- a meticulousness about details. They understand everything counts, and the details often make the difference.
The first place to start if you want to create a revolution within your business is with the details; they can change everything. Sure, one must have a mission, a vision, goals, plans and the commitment to put the effort into fulfilling them, but the big differences often are created by doing all the little things exceptionally well.
-- Troy Marshall