3 Little Principles with Benchmarking

To be the best in any industry or vertical, you first need to know what the best would have to look like. That is where benchmarking comes in. But if you are a little guy comparing yourself to the biggest guys, you might take away the wrong conclusions from the comparison. An article at Utech examines three small principles to keep in mind when benchmarking in order to arrive at more meaningful conclusions:

  1. Culture replication does not work.
  2. Not every business has the same goals.
  3. Keep an eye on actual competitors.

The Big and the Small

If you want your business to have a culture like Google, and you start employing a lot of gimmicks to make things feel more Google-like—it is not going to help anything. Why? Because culture is the result of how the business operates. It is the aroma that comes from a well-cooked meal. You cannot just try to replicate culture and expect something good to come of it.

Another thing to keep in mind is that businesses have different goals. If one of the major players is heading in a brand new direction, you do not need to follow that business there (unless it is a case like digital cameras replacing film cameras, of course). Business should only pivot when your strategic goals say it should be the case. Likewise, you should not pin success on how a few select metrics compare between your organization and other organizations. There could be healthy reasons why your metrics in one space are lower than that of another business. It is up to you to view the data holistically.

Lastly, benchmarking the biggest players with your not-biggest enterprise may not be the smartest idea in the first place. If you really want to know if your business is competitive, then keeper a closer eye on the smaller or more local businesses that are your most direct threats:

While you’re busy comparing and competing with the big competitor in California, a fellow Wisconsin organization is surpassing you.  This organization doesn’t even have to be in your industry, but perhaps they are partnered with a local competitor of yours.  While you’re struggling for one big deal, local businesses have gathered enough experience under their belt that bigger organizations are more willing to take a chance with them — allowing them to grow.  Not only that, but they may have an easier time recruiting and retaining talent because their people are committed to their growth.

You can view the original article here:

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