Turning Probable into Great Possibilities

McKinsey’s essay “Delighting in the Possible” is worth reading and contemplating for many reasons. What stood out to me is their premise that “uncertainty cannot be solved with pat procedures.” Sometimes, you need to shift your core assumptions because a fact-based view can prevent your company from great “possibilities”.

The article cited  the example of a firm facing increasing demand and wondering how to finance production to meet it. Could the firm stay within budget by cutting heads? McKinsey said the answer was to look at the situation from a new perspective and ask: How can we share our workload in a new way without cutting services or staff?

When I worked at Seagram, I spoke to the owner of Maker’s Mark, who was willing to sell his company for $20 million. Seagram’s CFO turned down our recommendation because he said the business would “get lost in the rounding.” Maker’s Mark is now worth $1 billion. It was small then because of a lack of capital, which Seagram could have provided.

My feeling is that good financial information can help companies avoid the “probable” suboptimal outcome and allow them to move on to the “possible” great outcome, if finance acts as a Strategic Business partner, rather than a constraint on success.

 

Other Posts

  • 𝐂𝐚𝐧 𝐘𝐨𝐮 𝐒𝐨𝐥𝐯𝐞 𝐑𝐮𝐛𝐢𝐤’𝐬 𝐂𝐮𝐛𝐞?

    𝐂𝐚𝐧 𝐘𝐨𝐮 𝐒𝐨𝐥𝐯𝐞 𝐑𝐮𝐛𝐢𝐤’𝐬 𝐂𝐮𝐛𝐞?

    24th April 2024
    Read More
  • 𝐇𝐨𝐰 𝐈𝐬 𝐆𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐃𝐞𝐟𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐞 𝐢𝐧 𝐁𝐚𝐬𝐤𝐞𝐭𝐛𝐚𝐥𝐥 𝐋𝐢𝐤𝐞 𝐌𝐚𝐧𝐚𝐠𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐘𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐂𝐨𝐦𝐩𝐚𝐧𝐲’𝐬 𝐁𝐨𝐭𝐭𝐨𝐦 𝐋𝐢𝐧𝐞?

    𝐇𝐨𝐰 𝐈𝐬 𝐆𝐨𝐨𝐝 𝐃𝐞𝐟𝐞𝐧𝐬𝐞 𝐢𝐧 𝐁𝐚𝐬𝐤𝐞𝐭𝐛𝐚𝐥𝐥 𝐋𝐢𝐤𝐞 𝐌𝐚𝐧𝐚𝐠𝐢𝐧𝐠 𝐘𝐨𝐮𝐫 𝐂𝐨𝐦𝐩𝐚𝐧𝐲’𝐬 𝐁𝐨𝐭𝐭𝐨𝐦 𝐋𝐢𝐧𝐞?

    22nd April 2024
    Read More
  • 𝐓𝐨 𝐛𝐞𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐰𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐧𝐨𝐭, 𝐛𝐞𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞 𝐚𝐬 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐝𝐨 𝐧𝐨𝐭.

    𝐓𝐨 𝐛𝐞𝐜𝐨𝐦𝐞 𝐰𝐡𝐚𝐭 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐚𝐫𝐞 𝐧𝐨𝐭, 𝐛𝐞𝐡𝐚𝐯𝐞 𝐚𝐬 𝐲𝐨𝐮 𝐝𝐨 𝐧𝐨𝐭.

    16th April 2024
    Read More