Business Not as Usual

Sustainable rapid growth is as fragile as a flower. Best business practices of the past are not the best practices of the future, hence dynamic management strategy is central to keeping up with, and to anticipate, the evolving market trends. Entrepreneur professor Simon Parker at the Richard Ivey School of Business and researcher in this phenomenon urges flexibility, adaptability and leeway to make the “changes to their strategies so they fit the changes in the external environment.”
Parker’s study of 100 mid-sized rapidly growing businesses in the 1990s revealed that: 

  • rapid growth strategies failed to diversify from the core product or service,
  •  were limited to a specialized marketing department,
  • myopically do quality control via customer surveys rather than with customer complaints,
  • fail to imbed growth infrastructure in the organization to stay organized, effective, and keep a high level of public perception.  

Growth is not dependent on the entrepreneurial’s character, personality or on the product. The ideas have been around for a while now, but with so little room for error in the current business world, the strategies to maintain growth are still worth revisiting and working towards using:

  • new products, new or extended markets, change in delivery methods, updated productions systems,
  • stay close to customer and market, learning for constant improvement,
  • team playing includes knowing your role and plying it well for the benefit of everyone, and linking compensation to quality performance,
  • constantly run reinvention experiments,
  • always develop your leaders and their people.

Adapted from Mary Teresa Bitti, Staying Agile Keeps Company on Toes, Financial Post, Times Colonist, Tuesday, April 6, 2010, B4.
smallbusiness@nationalpost.com

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