Congratulations! Based on your responses, you have successfully Gone Slow and are now fully equipped to Grow Fast.

Thanks to your proactive leadership, your business is the envy of its competitors. You have created systems and people that provide exceptional products and services. Your operational platforms, people, and strategy are prepared to keep you ahead of the competition. You continuously pursue new products and services, expanding your markets and success. You likely have a dashboard of financial and corporate indicators that you monitor closely so you can make timely adjustments when necessary. You invest time and money to improve not only your resources and systems, but your people.

But businesses change. Markets change. Economies change. Organizations that take their success for granted can quickly revert to ineffective and inefficient systems and behaviors.  Business owners must remain vigilant to the needs of their growing business.

In order to ensure that your organization will continue to thrive, consider these three helpful tips from Tilson CEO Brent R. Tilson’s book Go Slow to Grow Fast.  

Next Steps

  1. Continuously reassess your efficiency and effectiveness

The reality of any business Lifeline is that there are peaks, and there are valleys. Year 5 may be a banner year with soaring profits, a growing staff, new products and technologies, and high team morale. Year 7 may be just the opposite.

Over time, businesses find themselves in different stages. A company may have ideal systems and people at $5 million in revenue, but then grow to $10 million and outgrow its capability. Oftentimes the business won’t recognize that they have entered a ‘valley,’ as they continue to generate revenue, but their organizational effectiveness hasn’t kept up with their growth. Once problems arise, they will begin spending money to repair the issues, instead of making longer-term corrections.

The only way to smooth the cycle of peaks and valleys is to continually reassess your organization’s efficiency and effectiveness. The is no time for complacency when it comes to sustaining peak performance.

  1. Retain, retain, retain

Finding, developing, and motivating top talent is only part of the battle. After creating a highly effective workforce, it is imperative to retain them.

Outside recruiters actively contact employees, hoping to pry some away for opportunities where the grass may appear greener. Without a retention strategy, companies are exposed to promises of higher pay, less stress, more flexibility, and better career opportunities.

The cost of turnover is often estimated as high as 150 percent of an employee’s annual salary. A concentrated effort on retention will pay significant dividends and drive up revenue per employee and ROI. Also, companies must be quick to address poor performers. A guiding principle should be to identify and develop your top 15 percent, retain the next 70 percent, and continuously upgrade the bottom 15 percent.

  1. Answer the question: “What will put you out of business?”

This is the single most thought-provoking question a leader must ask of him or herself. I have asked hundreds of businesses and organizations this question as the starting point in planning for the future, and I always find it fascinating that a majority of leaders have never considered it.

The answer could be any number of things: a downturn in the economy, a new, disruptive technology, loss of a key employee, loss of funding, introduction of a lower cost alternative, or even a natural disaster.

At least annually—or more often, ideally—you and your management team should pose this question to help the team look around corners and prepare for the unexpected. It is the one thing you, as a business owner, are ultimately responsible for predicting so that you can make proper adjustments to your business plan.

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In Go Slow To Grow Fast, Tilson CEO Brent R. Tilson presents tools for leaders to zero in on the critical numbers and measurements they need to monitor.

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