Business Is An Opinion

This year I read the book There Is No Such Thing as an I.T. Project. In this book, the author takes the position that software is an opinion. It is an opinion about the way that the problem should be solved. Software is also an opinion about the way that people interact with the machines. The same sentiment is echoed in this blog post; titled Software should have a strong opinion.

Business is an opinion also. The purpose of a business is to add value. Your customers need or want something, and your business can bring that to them. As the business leader, your opinion of what is important, how the work is done, and the type of customers served, shapes the business. If your opinion resonates with the customer, they will buy from you. If it doesn’t, they will buy elsewhere.

Apple has the opinion that people are individuals and should celebrate their independence. Microsoft has the opinion that everyone should have access to computing power. Amazon (web services) feels that small companies should be able to leverage the same resources that big companies can. Each technology company has a different opinion on how the world should operate. Each company provides essentially the same thing: computing power. But each company looks different, attracts different customers, and has distinct measures of success.

The way you do business is an opinion about the way the world should work. Those people who agree with your opinion are your biggest fans and greatest customers.