Small town thinking is like a glass ceiling. It can trap you and stop you from getting those big deals just out of your reach. Getting out of that small town mentality is easier than it sounds.
All it takes is a little bit of faith, and no, I am not talking of the religious kind. I am talking about faith in your fellow business owner.
You would think that living in a small town business owners would be keen to work together, but this is definitely not the case. I have seen countless examples of deals passing us by because a joint venture could not get off the ground or one party pulled out at the last minute.
This fear of commitment is typical of small town thinking. In the big cities companies do joint ventures at the drop of a hat, and generally it is as successful as any other business deal.
So what’s the issue? Why are the local guys shy when it comes to doing joint deals? As far as I can tell it is simply fear of the unknown. Will your new partner steal the money? Will he steal the client? Will he drop you at the last minute?
Through regular engagement this fear of the unknown can be overcome. Some industries like the local ICT industry network regularly, so all the business owners and suppliers get to know each other. Once this happens it becomes hard to drop a new partner, and face the group again at the next network event.
Because of frequent networking and interaction the local ICT industry is a prime example of where joint ventures are abundant, and have even resulted in the attraction of large funding.
I would love to see more local companies win tenders from the local municipalities. If they partner up in a joint venture and go for those tenders that typically go to the big boys in the big cities then they may just stand a chance.