The elements of Founder’s Mentality: Bias for action

FM-Wheel-Owner-mindset-bias-for-action-220x207This is the eighth of nine blog posts examining the elements of Founder’s Mentality: Insurgency, frontline obsession and owner mindset. Here, we look at bias for action, one of the sub-elements of owner mindset.

In companies with high Founder’s Mentality, the heroes are the people who act. They don’t shy away from conflict—nor do they allow themselves to be bogged down in conflicts. They won’t tolerate a bureaucratic answer, especially if it means a customer is kept waiting. Continue reading

The elements of Founder’s Mentality: Strong cash focus

FM-Wheel-Owner-mindset-strong-cash-focus-220x207This is the seventh of nine blog posts examining the elements of Founder’s Mentality: Insurgency, frontline obsession and owner mindset. Here, we look at strong cash focus, one of the sub-elements of owner mindset.

Incumbent companies tend to lose faith over time in cost control. Instead of lowering sales, general and administrative (SG&A) costs as a percentage of sales, for instance, they are content to allow them to grow at the rate of sales growth. They ignore the value of continuously reducing costs and passing the benefit along to customers.

This doesn’t happen at companies with high Founder’s Mentality—companies we define as having an extraordinary sense of insurgency, a frontline obsession and an owner mindset, each of which have their own sub-elements (see figure below). The last of these elements, owner mindset, provides some of the most important antibodies to complexity, creating a culture that ruthlessly cuts costs and complexity and rewards those who act to overcome and destroy bureaucracy whenever it rears its head. Continue reading

The elements of Founder’s Mentality: Relentless experimentation

FM-Wheel-frontline-obsession-relentless-experimentation-220x207This is the sixth of nine blog posts examining the elements of Founder’s Mentality: Insurgency, frontline obsession and owner mindset. Here, we look at relentless experimentation, one of the sub-elements of frontline obsession.

Leaders of insurgent companies are endlessly restless. They are determined to shape the future and are committed to thrive in turbulence, not fall victim to it. This requires constant innovation around the customer and the customer offering and, more fundamentally, around the business. Continue reading

The elements of Founder’s Mentality: Frontline empowerment

FM-Wheel-frontline-obsession-empowerment-220x207This is the fifth of nine blog posts examining the elements of Founder’s Mentality: Insurgency, frontline obsession and owner mindset. Here, we look at frontline empowerment, one of the sub-elements of frontline obsession.

As companies grow, one of the first casualties of the resulting complexity is the front line. But that doesn’t happen at companies with high Founder’s Mentality because one of their defining characteristics is a frontline obsession—along with an extraordinary sense of insurgency and an owner mindset (see the figure below for the sub-elements of each). Continue reading

The elements of Founder’s Mentality: Customer advocacy

FM-Wheel-frontline-obsession-customer-advocacy-220x207This is the fourth of nine blog posts examining the elements of Founder’s Mentality: Insurgency, frontline obsession and owner mindset. Here, we look at customer advocacy, one of the sub-elements of frontline obsession.

Readers of this blog know that we define companies with high Founder’s Mentality as those with an extraordinary sense of insurgency, a frontline obsession and an owner mindset. Each of these characteristics contains its own sub-elements (see figure below), where we truly see the Founder’s Mentality come to life. Continue reading

The elements of Founder’s Mentality: Limitless horizon

FM-Wheel-Insurgency-limitless-horizon-220x207This is the third of nine blog posts examining the elements of Founder’s Mentality: Insurgency, frontline obsession and owner mindset. Here, we look at limitless horizon, one of the sub-elements of insurgency.

Founders of great insurgent companies are restless. They are leading a revolution and are not content to be constrained by industry boundaries. This makes their mission limitless—they have no ability to declare victory because there is always another market to conquer.

This sense of a limitless horizon is one of the defining characteristics of insurgency, which, along with frontline obsession and an owner mindset, are key elements of Founder’s Mentality (see figure below). Continue reading

The elements of Founder’s Mentality: Spikiness

FM-Wheel-Insurgency-spikiness-220x207This is the second of nine blog posts examining the elements of Founder’s Mentality: Insurgency, frontline obsession and owner mindset. Here, we look at “spikiness,” one of the sub-elements of insurgency.

Companies with high Founder’s Mentality have an extraordinary sense of insurgency, a frontline obsession and an owner mindset. Within those three overarching elements are nine sub-elements (see figure below), and it is within those elements that the richness of the Founder’s Mentality truly comes to life. Continue reading