The majority of the nation will remember Wallace and Gromit for the duo’s escapades, inventions and innuendoes (as well as a real love for Wensleydale cheese). What we should actually remember these national treasures for is in fact the lessons they taught freelancers and small business owners.
The duo who specialised in innovation had a number of attempts (many failed) at inventions and business ventures. Wallace’s self-confessed genius and Gromit’s silent intelligence made them the perfect partnership – and there’s plenty we should take away from the pair’s antics.
Creativity is Key
It’s true that Wallace and Gromit were never short of an idea. From the Knit-O-Matic to the Moon Rocket, the Shopper 13 to The Tellyscope, the duo had a list of inventions as long as your arm. You don’t to come up with an entire new invention to be a successful entrepreneur, but creativity is vital.
The most shared posts on social media are those that experiment with something new and imaginative, so don’t be scared to cross boundaries. Think of news ways you can inspire motivation in your employees and your work to keep your clients intrigued and always coming to your service, rather than the competition.
Any Idea Can Become a Business
Wallace and Gromit proved that any idea you have can become a viable business option. For example, who knew that the Bun-Vac 6000 would become such a success and have the inventors starting up their own pest control business?
Granted it didn’t turn out as well as everyone had hoped when Wallace turned into the were-rabbit and stole all the veg but the initial thought of creating a business based on their own invention was the root of all small business ventures! Let’s hope your project has more success…
Own Your Ideas
Although Wallace and Gromit made a great business team, there are some things that they just didn’t get right. One of them was knowing when to protect their ideas. Despite the numerous inventions that the duo managed to create and use effectively, there was very little evidence of patenting.
There’s a lot of evidence to support the team’s lack of patenting throughout the numerous TV shows and films they’ve appeared in. The most memorable, however was when Preston the robot dog stole the Knit-O-Matic in A Close Shave. The show’s villain even modified the machine and rebranded it as the Mutton-O-Matic.
Unfortunately there was only a patent pending on the machine, which meant there was little that could be done – apart from saving a herd of sheep from death and continuing to knit them jumpers by hand.
Had Wallace had the idea patented during the idea stage, rather than creation, then Preston’s evil plan would never have been carried out. Take a lesson away and patent any idea you have as soon as you think of it!
Decide on a Business Structure
Our favourite Aardman creations are always tackling a new idea – but this isn’t their only occupation. The pair have been window cleaners, bakers and, of course, a pest control team. Given their numerous different ventures, it’s probable that they had a number of different business structures for each endeavour.
The lesson to takeaway here is that you should have a structure that’s right for each business – it’s not exactly a ‘one size fits all’ kind of deal. Know your business structures and which one is right for your company (Psssst… if you’re not sure you can always ask one of our accountants).
Don’t be Afraid to Collaborate
Remember the Bun-Vac 6000? That business went a bit south when it was actually Wallace eating all the prize veg. But the end of the film shows the duo working with Lady Tottington to create a reserve for all the pests. The result? A happy ending!
The best businesses won’t be the ones where you’re afraid to work with others. These will be the projects you work on where input from others has created a great business. Unfortunately, you aren’t a one person wonder and working with others to realise the vision will give you the best reward.
What business lessons have you learnt from Wallace and Gromit over the years? Leave a comment in the section below or tweet us @Pandle!