Business Growth Strategy: An Ongoing Process

Overview

For many companies, business growth is often driven by unforeseen or unique market events that drive demand.

For many companies, business growth is often driven by unforeseen or unique market events that drive demand.  In any given year, the “stars may align” for a business and result in unforeseen growth.  An example of this is the topic of a recent article published in Plastics News, “A solar (eclipse) powered boom for specialty film business.” For some specialty film producers, the stars may not have aligned, but the alignment of the moon and sun created a once in a lifetime growth opportunity.  

As a growth strategy consultant, I immediately had two thoughts as I read through the article: 

  • I hope the film producers geared up production for the onslaught of orders, and 
  • I hope they are not waiting for the next US total eclipse as a strategic growth strategy, as it will not occur again until August 12, 2045.   

All companies should have a growth strategy, and most do.  However, based on my experience, most strategic growth plans are treated like an annual event.  Usually, near the end of the third quarter, functional group leaders come together and develop a comprehensive short and long-term strategic growth plan.  The plan is then presented to the executive group, put into a binder, and filed away until it is needed as reference for next year’s strategic planning process. 

Successful companies do not treat their strategic plans as trophies from a one-time event; they become working documents that drive the management of business on a daily basis. The aspirational goals of the strategic plan should be translated into an actionable management plan that is aligned to deliver the results outlined in the plan, and includes:  

  • KPM’s (to be measured and improved on a regular basis) 
  • business and process alignment throughout the organization 
  • departmental goals and objectives    
  • individual goals and objectives 
  • incentives 
  • improvement priorities 
  • training needs

Don’t be eclipsed by the competition. Develop a well thought out strategic plan and make it a “living document.”  Use it as the foundation for developing an ongoing management process designed to deliver results.  Growth Strategy is not an annual event. 

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