MT Round-table: Is small beautiful or big better?

A debate between leaders of companies large and small about the pros and cons of being an SME.

In association with British Gas Business, MT gathered leaders representing both ends of the business scale to debate the pros and cons of being an SME compared with a large corporate.

John Vincent: I started out quite big; I used to work at Procter & Gamble in sales and marketing. I had all of the joys of working for a big multinational. I then worked at Bain & Company, the business consulting firm. Then I started a little business called Leon with my business partner, Henry Dimbleby. The mission we had there was to try and make fast food good, as opposed to bad. But at the same time I did an aggressive turnaround of a Scotch whisky business called Whyte & Mackay. So I had this very sweet little Leon, a company we were trying to grow on the basis of that pure culture; but, at the same time, I had to turn around this big, quite difficult Scotch whisky business - which we did.

Matthew Gwyther: So, John, if you had to come down one way or the other, working for a large organisation or for yourself in a small organisation, which gives you more of a buzz?

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