Business Chaotics, It's All I Know.
Yup, I read another book. I think we can all agree we live in turbulent times. Current economic conditions combined with market globalization causes all sorts of fluctuation and chaos. I enjoyed parts of this book, but didn’t find it particularly valuable. I believe the lack of value is not the author’s fault, but rather a condition of me being a young entrepreneur.
I liked how the author reinforced the concepts by correlating turbulence and chaos to our immediate past (2008). What unfolded in 2008 is still quite fresh in my mind and it forced me to draw more meaningful parallels into the book. While we’ve had bad economic times in the U.S. before, the last time it was really bad I was only nine years old. I don’t have scars from that. The harsh realities that hit in 2008 (and 2009 at least) were more directly meaningful to me as a business owner and employer.
“Chaotics: The Business of Managing and Marketing in the Age of Turbulence” by Philip Kotler was really a discussion to help people mentally transition from an old paradigm of business management to a new one. In the old one, there were good times and bad times and the transition between the two was, while not exactly predictable, regular and rather slow (measured in multiples of years). In the new paradigm, there is a realization that shit happens and it happens all the time. Due to globalization and other factors, there is a lot more chaos. In the old paradigm people were taken off guard by the unexpected events of natural disaster (weather, fire, etc.). Now, regular economic fluctuations can take people off guard. Globalization, hypercompetition and the fact that we (as a global community) apparently don’t understand how to manage risk well have introduced all sorts of uncertainties.
Business chaotics is the mindset and process of preparing for uncertainties and having plans laid to deal with the shit that is sure to happen, even if we don’t know precisely kind before we step in it.
So, why did I say I didn’t get much value from this book? Don’t get me wrong, I got some… However, I didn’t have any revelations as the reviews indicated I might. The reason for this is that I’ve been an entrepreneur and business owner in the Internet sector for 12 years. My company enables start-ups and other companies intending to serve a global audience on the Internet. We apply technologies appropriately to improve the experience of their users (and thus increase revenues) as well as reduce operational costs. This marketplace has been turbulent since its inception. This is the only type of business environment I know. As such, this book didn’t help me transition mentally from the old way to the new way because I don’t know the old way.