Infrastructure and the solo entrepreneur

Saw this book title “What would you do if you knew you couldn’t fail?”. My instinctive response was “Nothing!  What would be the point?” I am not suggesting we should court failure, but we definitely shouldn’t be afraid of it.  Of course, we all want things to go ‘according to plan’. But when was the last time you actually learnt anything when it did?  Without the possibility of failure, can you really succeed?

‘Disruptive change’ is today’s mantra. Along with rapidly increasing technological change, the economy has also seen a large increase in the number of ‘solo entrepreneurs’.  This is not coincidence. The latter, no doubt, has a lot to do with downsizing in large companies, and by government, but it also reflects a greater willingness to assume risk, especially by the young. They interpret risk not as ‘a risk of failure’ but rather as ‘a risk of great success’.  And the world is benefitting by it.

However, can solo entrepreneurs, or at least small businesses, make a difference in infrastructure? Is this not a game in which only the mega-large or mega-rich can play?  For large scale production this is probably still true.  However for advice on policy, assessment of project proposals, improving decision or production flows, and many other aspects, small is definitely beautiful – it is nimble, can move quickly, is not bound by the need to protect past decisions.  And technology is now making large scale production (large, centralised, physical infrastructure) no longer the obvious ‘go-to’. So whether you are an organisation looking for an infrastructure solution or a solo entrepreneur in this space; small, customisable, and niche is the way things are going.

PS. If you are a solo entrepreneur in this space, you may enjoy a blog and podcast which I have recently discovered.  It is “Flying Solo” – everything you want to know about being a solo entrepreneur.  Its tag line is “work for yourself – not by yourself”.   I am enjoying it so have a look or a listen and tell me what you think.



One Thought on “Infrastructure and the solo entrepreneur

  1. Given that “disruptive change is today’s mantra”, the real challenge is how we can help our large organisations (e.g. government infrastructure delivery bodies) more ‘nimble’ like the solo entrepreneurs (or as Steve Denning would say ‘agile’: e.g. his Forbes article “How to make the whole organisation more agile’).

    I suggest this starts with ‘telling a story’ in our strategic plans (Denning has a real focus on storytelling) about where we are (current challenges) and where we want to be (how we’re going to deliver best value) in such a way that staff within the large bureaucracy have an opportunity to innovate… and so help the organisation as a whole ride the wave of disruptive change.

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