Flywheels or a break from every company?

In one of the scenes of the Polish film “ Never Tell Never” (dir. W. Pacyna, 2009), an entrepreneur comes to the main character, Amy Bilska, played by Anna Dereszowska. He is looking for the right person for a managerial position. Ama asks about the company’s financial standing, and to the man’s surprise, she replies that, depending on the situation, she needs the right person.

The entrepreneur reacts simply: — The idea is to be someone who will take it all by the throat. And shake it.

Fascinating how often in the process of change, radical revolutionists in management sought, not pragmatic streamlines of management systems. COVID-19 affected real elements of governance in 2020. First, it forced enterprises to pivot, i.e., flexibly modify existing business models. We switched to teleworking, entire sectors of the economy went into great turbulence, orders fell, contracts canceled or contracts were re-negotiated. The company’s strategy in crisis focused on cost-cutting and increasing efficiency. Most often, such reductions relate to marketing, and on the other hand, new people sought for sale or trade limits increased.

In my latest book, the above title describes, among others, three rights related to organization management, financial management, company strategy and financial strategy.

# 18: Communication between the head of marketing and the chief accountant should be implemented in accordance with the principles of building peaceful relations between civilizations that are alien to each other.

# 21: The development of marketing in a company blocked by four phenomena: ignorance, stupidity, marketing committees and people who think they are marketing gurus.

# 46: Present even the most complicated strategy in three points.

Financial strategy and marketing.

The modern enterprise is becoming a stronger and stronger hybrid of data (data-driven company) and humanistic values ​​(Human-to-Human concept). Brands become Brands 5.0, i.e., they build and monetize values ​​guided using technology with consumer empathy. Deloitte research indicates that the pandemic has accelerated the adoption of digital tools among businesses and customers. 85% of marketers are more open to market offers, and 84% believe customers place more value on digital experiences than they did before the pandemic. Marketing directors adjust their offer and activities to meet new expectations. 61% indicated that they are building a digital interface intended for customers. 56% have transformed go-to-market business models.

62% of marketers say marketing has become more important since COVID-19 emerged. However, 9% of marketing jobs have been lost, meaning more work with fewer employees. This situation expected to continue in 2021, and planned employment in the marketing department will drop to the lowest point in the history of this survey — -or the first time in history it will be negative (-3.5%). This defines many challenges in the financial sphere. First, striving for high marketing effectiveness, interest in growth hacking tools, the concept of flywheel marketing and the effectiveness of market activities. For many financial directors, the sphere of marketing is still difficult to quantify. It is also difficult for marketing directors themselves to indicate how investments in marketing activities bring specific results. It is worth emphasizing that while Supervisory Boards and management boards of companies have always paid attention to the dynamics of profitability or sales, today they increasingly notice that these two parameters strongly correlate with the increase in intangible elements, i.e., brand value.

Organization management, i.e., today we are market-driven.

Almost every trader will say that the customer is the center of attention. However, reality is different and most often it is determined by small details. According to the Flywheel Marketing concept, this kind of market flywheel can move more efficiently or brake due to various friction or resistance. What if we have a great advertising campaign, since the order processing leaves much to be desired. We may have fantastic salespeople, but the quality of the after-sales service leaves much to be desired. All these elements are in the sphere of customer journey, i.e., the strategic path on which the customer moves, from noticing the brand to becoming the best advocate. Ignorance of the client’s expectations or simply his simple disregard is a contradiction to the idea of consumer empathy.
The company’s strategy, i.e., be simply and smart.Small companies do not have problems with the changing market. They are like little yachts on rough ocean waves. They can change course quickly, face the wave or quickly maneuver between reefs. It is a bit different with large enterprises, which are burdened with piles of procedures, regulations, internal regulations and provisions. In addition, corporate people are often afraid of ordinary human responsibility for decisions made. It is not surprising because it is easy to lose a job or contract as a result of a wrong decision. Analyzing business failures, based on looking for reasons, not scapegoats, is still reaching the minds of entrepreneurs.

Each strategy can be presented in three simple points:

  1. What do you want to achieve? Specifically.
  2. Why do you want to achieve this? The more “why” questions you ask, the better.
  3. How do you want to achieve it? So, what methods will you use, which will be effective and efficient.

There is never uniform or 100% certain recipes for success in the management of any company or organization. This is known to absolutely everyone who has any experience in business. Navigating the rough ocean with our yacht full of entrepreneurial creation and passion is a journey from point A to point B and beyond. The course we choose and the results we achieve can be very diverse, even if it concerns companies of the same industry. This is the magic of creating and managing business, markets.

Original text in Polish

50 Laws of Kotarbiński Marketing
“Kotarbiński’s 50 Marketing Laws” is an extremely practical publication dedicated to entrepreneurs, business owners, management boards, marketing teams and anyone who believes that marketing is important in their work. Jacek Kotarbiński has gathered 30 years of his professional experience in marketing there. In a playful form, it presents informal laws governing marketing activities. It is a collection of very specific and valuable tips for small, large and medium-sized entrepreneurs and marketers. All inspired by the author’s professional practice, enriched with anecdotes and examples from life.

“The last three decades have been a feast of changes in the ways of managing companies, technological challenges, a complete transformation of customer behavior and priorities. For many entrepreneurs this period is shocking because they have never been prepared for such a crazy pace of change. Today, the change process is a key determinant of the development of any organization. This, in turn, is the fuel of marketing, which brings together all threads of information, and on their basis can develop the company. Unfortunately, the typical mentality still stands in the way of entrepreneurs, which limits their thinking about marketing to tools that support sales, advertising or various sophisticated manipulation techniques. And propaganda. (…) I would like this book to provide a bit of inspiration and reflection to anyone who builds and grows their business. “ From the author’s introduction.

Originally published at on January 29, 2021.



Economist, Keynote Speaker, Best-Selling Author, Marketing & Innovation Strategist, digital influencer, blogger, entrepreneur, top columnist Forbes Polska

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Jack Kotarbinski

Economist, Keynote Speaker, Best-Selling Author, Marketing & Innovation Strategist, digital influencer, blogger, entrepreneur, top columnist Forbes Polska