The world of business shapes our lives everyday. No matter where you live or what you do, businesses affect your lifestyle.
This article by Stanford states that “A business is a productive organization—an organization whose purpose is to create goods and services for sale, usually at a profit.”
Notice it doesn’t say anything else about what the company does or why it was created. It doesn’t speak to how the businesses accomplishes these goals, or how businesses change our world. Let’s talk to those details a little further, because they’re important in understanding the foundations of business.
Every Business is Unique and Different
There are a lot of ways to categorize businesses. For example, Business to Business (B2B) companies exist to help other businesses accomplish their goals. Business to Consumer (B2C) companies serve goods and services to individuals, not other companies.
Even businesses in the same industry operate differently. Ford makes different cars than Porsche. Consumers go to Facebook for one thing, but LinkedIn for another.
Even the way businesses get started is unique for each one. Some are started out of a passion project. Others are started simply to capitalize on an opportunity.
The point is that every business is different. Anytime you engage with one, expect it to be different from the last.
Businesses Change Over Time
Technology changes the way business is done. Companies such as Airbnb and Uber have dramatically changed the worlds of transportation and lodging. It used to cost a lot of money upfront to open a hotel or become a taxi driver. Now all it takes is an empty room in your house or a decent vehicle.
Manufacturing companies now rely on robots to do a lot of the work people used to do. They use advanced machinery to track production rates. Sensors inside the machines alert the company and its manufacturer when something breaks, making it easier for a technician to replace the part and get the machine running again.
Marketers now rely on software to help them with all aspects of their job, from researching customers to delivering personalized messages based on a customer’s preferences. It’s easier than ever for them to know what a customer wants and give it to them.
Technology doesn’t have to be high-tech. A moving company that invests in a unique cart to help save time is a positive change.
Businesses aren’t stagnant. If a business isn’t growing and innovating, it’s dying.
Businesses Shape Culture
How do you shop for Christmas presents? If you’re like a lot of people, you just hop on Amazon and start searching for what you want to buy.
Where do you buy your groceries? If you shop at a big chain like Kroger or Walmart, there’s a good chance you order groceries ahead of time and have a store associate do the shopping for you.
Do you have a computer in your pocket? The smartphone may be the single largest cause of culture change in the last 15 years. It has impacted almost every aspect of our lives.
These changes in our culture didn’t come from individuals. They came from businesses who launched new goods and services.
Businesses change the world we live in every day.
We hope we can set you up on your path to success. To the journey!