The Business Lab

How much time do you spend in your business lab trying something new? Perfecting a formula, shot, strobe setup, or algorithm?

There is a temptation to coast and only do what you know you are good at. But what happens when what you are good at becomes mundane and boring? Do you jump to your trusty social network for inspiration? Do your customers notice when you are bored? How about your employees?

Business, according to Michael E. Gerber, is all about learning, experimenting, and investigating. He writes in The E-Myth Revisited:  “Yes, the simple truth about the greatest business-people I have known is that they have a genuine fascination for the truly astonishing impact little things done exactly right can have on the world.”

Two things stand out why all business owners and employees need to develop a learning attitude within an organization:

  1. Fine-tune genuine fascination:  It isn’t enough to be fascinated by things and stuff.  Genuine fascination eliminates boundaries of time and energy, pushing us into the realms of Flow (Csikszentmihalyi) and being in the zone. It brings a purpose and a drive to everything we do. Without curiosity, boredom will overtake a business quicker than moss covering a brick wall in the Pacific Northwest.
  2. Little things, astonishing impact:  The big events in life are few and far-between. However, the little things of our jobs done with an artistic flair of perfection can have an unbelievable impact upon the morale of an organization and the people who benefit from the work done.  Within the photography industry, photographers and camera manufacturers perpetuate the eternal question:  Is Canon better or is Nikon?  This is a big question which distracts from the true function of a camera, to take pictures. The little things which create astonishing results become lens selection, shutter speed, aperture, perspective, lines, color, light placement, subjects.

As I further my business model for Chris Martin Studios, I am purposely adding time for experimentation. It is my lab. It will shake the boredom from within. And it will be fun.