Sep 26, 2023

The Momentum Equation: What Business Owners Can Learn from Bamboo

Business is an infinite game. Forget just this year's goals; what's your vision for the next decade? Build those roots, and you'll grow faster and stronger.

The Momentum Equation: What Business Owners Can Learn from Bamboo

Greetings, Visionary Business Owners,

Today we're diving into a subject that's often discussed but seldom understood in its full depth—momentum. This isn't merely a buzzword. It's the invisible force that can either propel your enterprise to unparalleled success or keep you grounded in a never-ending loop of mediocrity.

Let's start with a seemingly unrelated but profoundly instructive example: the bamboo tree. Imagine planting a bamboo seed. For the first year, it grows a modest one foot. In the second year, another foot. Then, it appears to hit a plateau, showing no visible growth for the next eight years. At this point, you might question your efforts, even contemplate giving up. But here's the twist—during those dormant years, the bamboo is busy laying down an intricate, robust root system. And then, almost miraculously, from year ten onwards, it starts to grow exponentially, reaching heights you hadn't even dared to imagine.

Why this story? Because your business is very much like this bamboo tree. You launch with a vision, see some initial growth, and then often, things slow down. It's tempting to look at flashier, faster-growing competitors and feel a pang of envy or even doubt. Don't. What you're doing during this seemingly slow period is laying down your business roots—your corporate culture, your customer relationships, your operational efficiencies. These are the pillars that will support not just growth, but sustainable growth.

So how does momentum play into this? Think of momentum as your business's 'pulse.' It's a sign of life, but its rate and rhythm need to be managed. Too fast, and you risk running into the same pitfalls as companies like Peloton and WeWork, which prioritized aggressive expansion over solidifying their foundations. Too slow, and you miss opportunities, lagging behind more nimble competitors.

Let's bring this into sharper focus with a real-world comparison. Consider WeWork and its early competitor, Regus. While WeWork pursued an aggressive, even reckless, growth strategy that has led them into financial troubles, Regus took a more measured approach. They initially captured market share but then focused on consolidating gains, improving their services, and most importantly, building strong relationships with their clientele. Today, Regus stands as a global leader, a testament to the power of balanced, strategic momentum.

Here's the key takeaway: Business is not a series of sprints determined by quarterly reports; it's a marathon with milestones spaced out over years, even decades. If you're always preoccupied with short-term gains, you're missing the bigger picture. The questions to ask are not just, "What will boost this quarter's earnings?" but also, "What will ensure the business thrives for generations?"

In summary, momentum is not just about speed; it's about direction and sustainability. It's about recognizing the stage your business is at, understanding the nuances of paced growth, and planning for the long haul. So take the time to build those roots, develop a strategy that spans years, not just quarters, and when you're ready, that's when you'll grow—stronger and faster than you ever thought possible.

Stay ambitious and till our next insightful journey,

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