Many factors affect the pace of a company’s growth and operations. Often times executives within a company differ on what they believe determines this pace. One side will believe that the market drives the pace, while on the other hand the ability and staffing of operations will make that determination. Below I will show how this decision can vary from one department to another and how they can all get on one page.
The Exec VP Sales, argues that their company should “at least match the pace of growth of the market.”
The COO, is equally forceful when he says that the company’s pace is “strictly a matter of how quickly the business can produce quality products and services.”
The CMO asks “why shouldn’t we try to outpace all competitors if we have the potential to do so?”
The VP HR values corporate culture and thinks that their pace of growth should be “fast enough to provide career advancement and learning opportunities for employees but not work them so hard that they feel taken for granted or consider leaving.”
The company’s CFO gets annoyed about what is perceived as personal preferences about pacing. “Our capacity to attract financing is the optimizing and the limiting factor,” he says flatly.
The R&D Director feels proud of their track record and reputation. “Our customers expect to see innovative new products from us. If they don’t see it, they’ll go elsewhere.”
Then the outsourced market researcher presents findings and recommends that the company should pick up its pace “to catch up” and observes that there is a window of opportunity.”
One of the most fascinating elements of a CEO’s role is facilitating the process among these participants to articulate the logic behind optimum pacing. What and who will lead? What and who will follow?
If “at least matching the pace of growth of the market or industry” is the premise or strategic driver, then the COO might have to find new ways to speed up the production of quality products and services…like acquisitions or joint ventures. If your competitive advantage is largely about the attraction and retention of top talent or innovation, the CFO may need to find new sources of financing to fuel an increased pace. And if hitting a defined window of opportunity is the defining principle, the deadline becomes the focus for everyone.
What determines the pace of your business? Is everyone on the same page with this view?
Known as The Growth Strategist®, Aldonna Ambler built and grew a suite of companies to help midsized B2B companies achieve accelerated growth with sustained profitability® A Certified Speaking Professional (CSP), Ambler has addressed over 2000 audiences and hosted a syndicated online talk show about growth strategies for 9 years. As a growth financing intermediary, Ambler raised over $1 Bil dollars for midsized companies. The winner of over 2 dozen prestigious national and statewide "entrepreneur of the year" awards, Ambler is available to speak about “profitable growth during any economy” and/or serve on the board of a growth-oriented privately-held company.