You think you know the keys to successful growth. Or do you?
This is a phrase we use to encourage the leader of a business to think about what he or she really knows about growing a successful business. But it’s not just a catch phrase. It’s a serious question! And we have the answer.
How do we know what the keys to successful growth are? We’ve taken a practical and scientific approach to understanding what drives the success of a growing business; we’ve conducted extensive research to understand it and then applied our skills and experiences growing businesses to develop a focused and proven approach.
We define growth in terms of revenue, profits and talent. Some companies have a greater focus on revenues, some on profits. Our research and experience indicates that without a balance of revenues, profits and talent (the people of the business), sustained growth will not occur.
We began researching what it takes to build a successful growing company in the mid 1990s. The goal was to develop a “formula’ for sustained growth. We contrast this with fast, out of control, growth. Are there some common business practices or themes around what it takes to grow a successful company? In order to answer this question we began our journey into researching the growth practices of successful companies.
We started with reviewing current ‘research’; books on growth, articles on growth and other growth related research studies. Many of these studies involved larger company long term growth successes. We then ‘quantified’ what each author identified as the top growth practices. To date we have compiled over 30 of these studies.
Next, we targeted fast growth companies to understand what smaller and faster growing companies focused on to grow. The Inc. 500 and other fast growth lists were the perfect companies to survey. Using our previous research, we developed a survey to identify what business practices these fast growth companies focused on. To date we have surveyed over 500 of these fast growth companies to understand what they have done to grow so successfully.
When we combine this research and analysis into one data set and prioritize the business practices that build fast and sustained growth companies, we obtain what we call the 7 Keys to Growth
|The 7 Keys to Growth are:
- Right People in the Right Seats – Identifying the strategic ‘seats’ in your business and developing the key people to fill them
- Effective Strategic Planning – having a documented strategic plan and a process to review and adjust it
- Advanced Customer Management – providing customized solutions to segmented customer groups through unique delivery channels
- Robust Process – defining and developing effective and efficient core business processes
- Differentiated Product and Services – providing superior, innovative and differentiated products and services
- Strong Core Values – developing accepted fundamental principals, standards or beliefs that bond and motivate the organization
- The Ability to Execute – Having the ability to implement your company’s strategies and tactics effectively and efficiently
(You can click on each Discipline to learn more but read on first)
Through conducting our research and subsequently implementing these Keys in entrepreneurial organizations we learned much about these companies and their leaders.
- Most organizations have AT MOST 60% of the Keys instituted in their businesses
- The companies that are implementing more of them are growing stronger
- Most companies do not have an effective strategic planning process and resulting growth plan
- Most CEOs believe they know the keys to successful growth – and they don’t!
We’d like to help you and your company become a continued successful growing company by building a growth foundation. To learn how prepared your company is for sustained growth, take our
Strategic Growth Analysis.