In physics many systems’ definitions depend on two things, on one hand the formulae that define the behaviour of a system in general, and the constraints. One such case is the drum. The movements of the drum’s membrane are very well defined by the following differential equation:
I need not go in detail, see more here, but let me assure you that this equation does not mean a lot unless constraints are defined. One such constraint is the fact that the membrane does not move on the edges, i.e. the rim of the drum. Therein the vibration of the membrane is zero, or at least very close to it.
Now let’s go to business. What are the equations there and what are the constraints.
It would be tempting to write a differential equation for the business, which I intend to do sometime. Basically I’d need to put together functions of sales, fixed and variable costs, plus I’d need to factor in some equivalent of mass, to have something parallel to inertia, plus I’d need to put in a friction-carrying element, to get things slowing if nothing else happens, maybe ad some risk factors, etc.
Now this post is about constraints, not the equations. In business the following contraints apply: budget, time, knowledge, people, market. Actually without the constraints any business, almost, can grow to be a billion dollar business. But, as but always comes whenever there’s reality involved, most businesses fail. Some stagnate. And very few thrive. On that note, business seems as a lottery almost, however one wherein know-how and effort increase chances of success significantly.
Now, to finish this post, let me point out the one constraint that is the most important in business. In my opinion, a biased view of the moment, I think the most important constraint in business is time. As in “In business timing is everything.” It’s not money. Often money is a constraint, but time is a far more important one.
In life, in opposition to business, time is not key, it’s the people. Hence, business is a time-limited game with possibly infinite results money wise, whereas life is a people-rich environment with both limited time and money, of which the latter means very little, and the former is essential.