They begin in largely unstructured teams that respond quickly to rapidly changing conditions and they are lean and focused. To scale up, they need to understand how to gain more income per employee by developing systems, specialization of roles, clear plans and KPIs for success. Startups need to make these changes as they grow because the ad hoc management methods many startups use will collapse under their own weight as the company scales from ten to twenty five to one hundred, to five hundred and to one thousand or more employees.
Large corporations are rewarded by relying on the systems that allow them to operate effectively at scale.
The culture is designed to support systems and process – but this is the very culture that kills startups.
What makes large companies successful is what kills innovation and ideas in startups.
Scaling Down is about re-defining how corporate innovation programs work. It’s about learning from lean and fast-moving startups and building innovation programs that look like startups but that serve a bigger corporate strategic need.
Corporate innovation programs are broken. What used to work with internal R&D programs no longer fits the fast paced innovation that global competitors are bringing to the marketplace. Internal innovation programs operate slowly, consume huge resources and can’t keep up with startups that can operate without all the corporate management baggage and anti-innovation cultures that kill ideas.
Scaling down is a process driven program that begins by identifying global trends to determine the direction that an industry is headed in. It then assesses the corporation’s strengths that it can bring to innovation and designs an innovation program that takes advantage of these strengths while eliminating the startup-killers that have made them successful. Finally, the Scaling Down program leads into the HyperAccelerator model that creates a pathway to de-risking and accelerating the innovation process.