Through Osmosis

Funny enough, I actually have said this very thing aloud:

via Dilbert

Part of the way you’ll learn is through osmosis.

It’s funny, it’s true, and it’s not very useful nor helpful to boot.

But… in the super-early days of a startup, it’s where you may start. Part of this is because the lack of systems and programs is de facto standard but the another part is that early stage companies attract folks who do not necessarily love deeply rooted systems and protocols as they enjoy the freedom and autonomy to grok what needs to be understood and then spend the vast majority of their time in execution.

This doesn’t excuse the company, naturally, of having systems (or the lack thereof) but it’s an culturally understood that many of these systems are being built “in-flight” as they say (or the idea that you’re building the plane while it’s flying type of thing).

For a large(r) company, onboarding through osmosis is terrible and a significant problem, but, for startups, it’s part and parcel of how they tend to operate. And, in some ways, I think there will always be parts of business building that can only happen through gradual assimilation and it’s important that the effect takes hold and root.

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