Building our Small Giant

Vivayic leaders venture to a conference of values

Vivayic is a company that chooses to be Great instead of Big. A big part of our motivation for this revolves around the Small Giants philosophy.

This philosophy is more than just that – it’s a community – and it is founded upon the operating principles in Bo Burlingham’s book, Small Giants: Companies that Choose to Be Great Instead of Big. At their annual conference, a small group of like-minded business owners whom, like Vivayic, want their values to show up in every facet of our business, get together to share best practices and discuss current issues.

Seth, Carrie, Emily, and Doug at the Welcome Reception overlooking the Chicago skyline. Photo via Small Giants Facebook

Seth, Carrie, Emily, and Doug at the Welcome Reception overlooking the Chicago skyline. Photo via Small Giants Facebook

 We recently returned from the Small Giants Summit and are excitedly implementing what we learned. The Small Giants mission and vision align well with our business and personal beliefs. All attendees believe in and run their business based on six themes from the Small Giants book. Members of this group focus on as much, if not more, on being great places to work (and to work with) as opposed to rapid business growth and expansion. It’s reaffirmed our belief in hiring good people.

 As a result of the conference, we realized that we can do better as leaders if we start our team interactions by revisiting our vision, values, strategic goals and operating principles. If we’re all on the same page, our daily efforts and interactions with each other and our clients will be more clearly aligned with these guiding philosophies.

 We did more than gain a renewed belief in staying true to our culture, we learned from each other. It’s important, especially as business owners, to build a network of peers and mentors that have similar experiences and challenges in building a small business, while focusing on values-based leadership. At this conference, we did just that. We gathered ideas, brainstormed with others and learned what’s worked and what hasn’t in their small businesses. Now, we can apply each of those small lessons at Vivayic.

 And we’re definitely on the right track to building our small giant of a company. We have documented our values, vision and strategic goals, and we strive to follow them every day. As with any company – large or small – these are ever-evolving.

Part of the journey will always be leading our team toward full alignment between these three cornerstones – values, vision and strategic goals – that guide our work and interactions with each other.