Thinking big in a small company

By Puja Hazlehurst, Engineering Integration Lead, Caeli Nova

Like many of my colleagues here at Caeli Nova, I have had the opportunity to work for large multinational organisations, before moving to a small business with big ambitions. While both experiences have been fulfilling, working for a small organisation is exciting, fast-paced and ever-evolving.

Agility: With fewer people, smaller organisations have the capability to change direction and adapt quickly as and when required. This ability makes it possible to try new ideas and take those that work forward, moving closer to the objective of the organisation. The pace at which this progress can be achieved in a larger and well-established organisation is limited due to processes that need to be adhered to. Having various functions working on multiple projects with differing priorities means these changes take time to approve before they can be implemented. 

Resource: The benefit of various functions and a large workforce means that product and industry specialists are available and dedicated to the organisation. Their specific knowledge and experience in a particular area allows them to provide advice and guidance on demand, which has huge benefits. With smaller businesses, such roles are less available, but still accessible. Smaller organisations need to be smarter, ensuring specialists are available to them as and when they require expert advice.

Roles: Within larger organisations, roles are typically very well defined. It is usually very clear what responsibilities a title brings, especially within a well-established organisation. This allows individuals within the organisation to see what their natural next role is likely to be and the steps they need to take to get there. Although there is structure in smaller organisations, the boundaries of a role are less defined and as such it is up to the individual to form their own path with the help of their leadership team. This can bring excitement; with roles being less defined, individuals are more able to cross boundaries and broaden their experience and skills.

Culture: People are an organisation’s most important asset, which means culture takes centre stage. Culture is so delicate that the smallest factor can shift its balance. Usually in larger organisations, individuals in senior roles work hard on culture, and any changes impact their immediate department or team. Within smaller organisations, individuals have a lot of influence and responsibility when it comes to culture regardless of their role, tenure and experience. This is because any change they implement is going to affect the entire organisation, which is a great responsibility to have.

Team: Being part of a small organisation brings a strong sense of teamwork. We rely on each other for support and guidance, acknowledging each other’s work with great pride. At Caeli Nova, we are one team working together and drawing upon each other’s brilliant skills to achieve exactly the same goal.