When no.8 isn't enough.

by Lisa Nicks.

No. 8 wire mentality drives us - but can it also limit us?

Kiwi ingenuity is legendary. In 1893 we were the first country to give women the vote, our man Sir Ed was the first to conquer Everest and in business today we have some world beaters – just look at Weta Digital, Rocket Lab, Trilogy Skincare and A2 Milk.

We get a lot done for a small country. Many agree that this is because of our No. 8 wire mentality – the ability to make a lot from a little. Clearly this gives us an advantage, because we make things happen on a shoestring. However, I have a theory that when you flip this around, this approach could also be holding us back.

Let’s have a closer look at my theory. The whole “she’ll be right”, just-get-on-and-do-it mentality gets us to a certain point very well. Particularly for young start-up businesses that began in a garage somewhere, born from the germ of an idea.

Our Kiwi “can do” attitude is how we get these things off the ground, and that’s great – up to a certain stage.

In any business you come to a point on the growth curve where the way you currently manage your business just isn’t good enough. A point where spreadsheets and a lolly scramble of systems can’t handle the amount or complexity of data your business is trying to make sense of.

We call this point “Spaghetti Junction”. If you have Spaghetti Junction syndrome it basically means your systems don’t work together and it’s hard (or impossible) to get a clear picture of where your business is at any point in time. Maybe this situation sounds familiar to some of you!?

This creates a disconnect between your intentions of how you want to run the business and your ability to execute on those intentions.

Inefficiencies and errors start to creep in. Maybe that’s OK in the early days but as you get bigger, mistakes become more and more expensive, and could even cost you your business.

Inventory management is a classic example of where errors can really cost you. Without a complete overview of your business, managing inventory poorly can lead to multiple problems. Simple issues like overstocking or understocking in certain locations can slow you down and cost you money.

So, at this point, here’s the acid test for my theory. As the business owner, what do you do? Do you say she’ll be right and keep the faith with the No. 8 wire system you’ve put together OR do you look for a better way to manage your business? What would you do?

I would argue do not live with the status quo, do not accept the No. 8 wire solution. Instead, harness the ingenuity that got you to this point in the first place and get a system that’s flexible enough to meet your needs and drive your growth.

So, are you ready for No.8 Wire 2.0? It’s your choice how you play the game, but if you want the best chance of winning then look for a complete business management system that grows with you. If you’re ready to escape Spaghetti Junction and win back control and visibility over your business performance,  click here to learn more.


Lisa Nicks


Great outcomes start with great conversations