Every Business is Different
A side effect of The Great Resignation (which was more about people shifting jobs than people quitting) was how people faced a radically different hiring environment.
“Is People and Culture the same as Human Resources?”
“What is a DevOps and how is it different than a Project Manager?”
And that’s just job titles. If you stayed in the same job, you probably experienced changes in your business processes.
“I used to just shoot an email and they’d handle it. What’s a Jira?”
“Why are we having these Zoom meetings all of a sudden? What happened to Teams?”
Whether its different jobs or the same one, change is the only constant. And it’s totally reasonable to be confused by this.
The only way to not be confused is by doing something a little nuts. You’d have to work in multiple businesses, in multiple industries, learning the ins and outs of multiple departments and their processes.
Totally nuts, right? But you know who does that?
Trainers. (or whatever title is used to for the people who educate employees on processes and policies)
Trainers have to burrow into the processes of other departments so they can build courses. You can’t (and shouldn’t) try to train someone on what to do until you know what is done.
Now imagine a trainer moving between industries. Imagine the breadth, and depth, of their exposure to how many different kinds of businesses and processes there are.
As an instructional systems designer, I did this. Then, I got into operations and had a chance to apply it. Whether acting as a COO and managing the transition out of an ERP, or as a strategic advisor supporting the C-suite, or as a contracted coder wrestling with an API, I have never seen two companies that were exactly alike.
And while the uniqueness of each business does make it hard to come up with universal solutions, it also allows different businesses to adapt differently to the same problem.
And those adaptations ensure that competition between businesses is less driven by simple things, like funding or software.
It ensures that it is driven by complex things, like the people and their experiences and how they work together.
As economies get more erratic, it will be the companies that focus on their people that will survive and thrive.
Because that’s what makes a business different.