I recently read an article about the advantages of a large business. I wanted to take this chance to champion the small business/association. How do we turn these advantages for large businesses into advantages for our small staff associations?
Large Business Advantage 1: Stronger Brand Recognition
Large businesses have better brand recognition because they’ve been around longer and have the resources to promote themselves. I say, brand recognition is only good if your reputation is good. Let’s look at insurance giant AIG, for example. According to The Wall Street Journal, AIG is the least reputable company in the country for the fifth year in a row. Big companies with bad reps need lots of resources and money to bring their reputation back up. As a small business, you have more control over your brand and it arguably takes less effort to repair a damaged reputation if less people know about your reputation.
Large Business Advantage 2: Greater Human Resources
Large companies have more employees, allowing them to pool resources to accomplish the work. But more employees also mean paying more for their benefits and salaries and needing a bigger HR department to manage it all. Having more employees makes it hard to weed out the weak links, but in a smaller environment, it is easier to tell who isn’t pulling their weight. Being in a smaller work environment means each person gets to be diverse and do more varied work, unlike a large company where one person may do one task for the duration of their employment.
Large Business Advantage 3: Economy of Sale
Being big means you get to buy more, which often times means a mass quantity discount. For instance, you can save 10 cents per ream of paper if you buy 100 more reams. Being small means I use less paper so I need to buy less. Since buying supplies from a big company and buying locally can be comparable in small amounts, I get to choose to if I want to buy locally from a small business to support my neighbors.
Large Business Advantage 4: Compensation Packages
Typically, large companies have more money to offer for salaries and benefits. What I find is that small associations typically do have pretty good benefits because they get to decide among themselves what those benefits should be. If there is a change in benefits, they are quicker to act on it whereas a large company may take longer to get benefits approved through the hierarchy. Sure the salary may not be as high as the execs in the large companies but remember, not everyone in the large company is making big bucks and your job is way more rewarding!