I have used two cards from the creative whack pack to stimulate my thinking. The cards are:
- Listen to your dreams – Few days ago, I got a dream regarding the sun, I don’t remember the full dream.
- Make a Metaphor – Let’s try to link the sun in our solar system to various businesses.
Which Kind of businesses are like the sun in the solar system?
Before reading, pause————— think———————– take a pen/pencil and paper and draw the same try to link sun/ solar system with businesses.
1. Sun -The Brand
Brands – Many other businesses (Planets) are entirely dependent on them.They cannot function if the brand closes down. The brands have power to change the supplier if they want to, though not very often.
P&G being sun in the solar system. An Innerwear brand like Jockey (USA) (SUN) outsources or licences its brand to other manufacturers. Mcdonald’s (Sun) has created various Earth ( like: Connaught Plaza Restaurants Pvt Ltd (CPRL), franchise partner north India) around the world using franchisee model. Coke (Sun) for various bottling manufacturers.
Another interesting example: Premco Global Ltd- A company in the narrow fabric manufacture market (making elastics used in innerwear) – It is a planet of solar system dependent on the sun (Hanes- brand).
Interesting point to ponder is what if we reverse and think which are the businesses where brands don’t function as a sun?
2. Sun – the infrastructure provider
Where the sun acts as a infrastructure provider for the solar system on which other intelligent fanatics (Planets) jump.
Amazon- Jeff Bezos (amazon founder) didn’t had to lay down cables (optic fibre) to start selling online. It already had the advantage of internet being provided by other companies. In this case the internet is the sun providing infrastructure to various other businesses.
Disney – When video cassettes were developed Disney was the first one to take advantage. It also signifies autocatalyst businesses which automatically benefit when something new develops.
If you are a garment manufacture then power (sun) on which you are dependent.
3. Sun – Attractive Super house – Float businesses
All the planets of the solar system revolve around the sun. The attractive power (energy) of the sun is very strong enough. The sun can be though of as a float business which attract use other people’s money at a very cheap cost or for free. These businesses generally have negative working capital.
Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL)- is a pure example of the same as it can get pay its suppliers later and collect cash from customers early. Take the case of Wonderla- Theme Parks it is a sun which can use the cash from customers easily.
Another case is that of your insurance company and bank, however it may depend how cheaply they can use your money.
To learn more about float businesses see Professor Sanjay Bakshi’s post on the same.
4. Sun- The Machinery Manufacturer
Typical case of the same can be seen in the yarn industry. Whereby there are two or three (Sun) major yarn machinery manufacturers all operating having an above average return on capital while most of yarn manufacturers are operating at a below average returns on capital.So the machinery manufacturer is a sun.
What more interesting metaphors can we link to business from my dream of sun?
1. Which businesses are like the Earth in the solar system, which is the only planet supporting life forms?
2. Which businesses are very near to the sun (Mercury) or which are very far (Neptune) from the sun?
3. Which are the businesses like Pluto which can get destroyed?
4. Which businesses are like the moon giving light to some part of the Earth when the sun is not visible?
5. Which businesses are like the rays of the sun?
6. Let’s Invert, which are the businesses which are like asteroids for our Earth?
There are many things to ponder. You may derive your own conclusions or metaphor, that is the reason for this whole exercise to stimulate creativity.
Another dream I got was regarding me drowning in the ocean. Play and learn.
Mark Twain once said, “To a man with a hammer, everything looks like a nail”