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Success in business is a rare thing, in fact 70% of businesses fail within their first 10 years. And that number holds true for all types of business. Of those that don’t fail, only a few really soar.
Why am I saying this?
Simply to suggest that you be careful when you think about emulating your peers or you may well be joining a pack of lemmings heading for an imminent demise.
Look at any group of businesses and the average mode of operation is risk aversion. Slow and steady, stay in the pack. But we know that business success is totally dependent on contrarian thinking and that risk aversion is not a way to grow your business. Business leaders tell me that they ‘bet the company’ at least every 3 or 4 years.
When did you last bet yours?
PWC’s Thomas A. Stewart and Jeannette R. Gatchell looked at 1,000 of the 200,000 mid-market companies ($10M - $1B) in the US and came up with these essential growth factors:
1. Formal growth strategy: Developing a long-term growth plan with specific steps for execution
2. Market expansion: Seeking new customers and moving into new territories
3. Attracting and retaining staff: Having recruiting power, especially the ability to attract and keep top managerial talent
4. Staff development: Investing in training, education, and career path development to allow talent to flourish
5.Investing and innovating: Developing and introducing new products and services and investing in scaling the business to support growth
6. Financial management: Accessing and managing capital
7. Attracting and retaining staff: Having recruiting power, especially the ability to attract and keep top managerial talent
Most companies have no plans, and also fail to execute on any of those growth factors. What is your plan for this year?
Kingsford is approaching its 21st year in business and has worked with hundreds of companies around the world. If you would like some objective input – call me!