The door of opportunity opens and rapid growth is on the agenda
It is an exciting time when a company has developed new products and/or discovered new markets that allow it to rapidly expand and grow. These opportunities may occur early in the life cycle of a company or later through reinvention. When such opportunities arise, you need to take market share, make a strong imprint in your industry, and set competitors aside. Delivering rapid profitable growth is an important discipline during these times.
Rapid growth requires a company to be very agile. It can only happen in a company that still balances an entrepreneurial culture with the capability to respond to market situations, customers’ demands and opportunities combined with a platform of standards and practices to allow scalable growth. A company that is not held back by bureaucracy or slow decision-making and is willing to take calculated risks. A company whose decision making is fact-based, thorough and rapid – and performed to a well-researched plan.
Companies that face rapid growth are often start-ups or those that are releasing innovative products. Start-ups are learning as they grow and their operational capacity is often untested. Those businesses require a lot of management time and are reliant on predictable top-line forecasting and the right customer mix. The sales team is highly motivated, requiring specialised management to deliver results without chaos – chaos on the frontline being one of the major reasons companies fail during these times.
At the point where companies are releasing new products, they have typically improved their operational capacity and have the financial resources to manage their supply chain effectively. Their sales organisation is fresh thinking and energetic, and compensation plans need to be carefully designed to support profitable growth without sacrificing other product or service groups.
In both cases, the biggest challenge presented by rapid growth is how it is managed. Although the entrepreneurial spirit is alive and well in these situations, the need for structure, planning and a well-managed process, each and every week underpins everything at the sales management level. It is the opposite of what most companies attract and experience when rapid growth opportunities are identified. If anything, it has more measures than any other growth strategy.
Recently we watched a company that identified an outstanding opportunity for growth and they approach it with a true entrepreneurial spirit. The excitement spread and the product became the focus of a team of key resources were focused on. The product had the ability to scale rapidly if managed correctly. As part of their excitement, they rushed to market too quickly and things started to go wrong. The lack of measurement making it impossible to break down what the actual issues were; it became a massive problem to deal with. They continually flipped from operational to sales, sales to marketing, marketing back to operational. Nothing was aligned, planned, or measured allowing this opportunity to move forward.
Stepping back and taking stock of the situation, the product was failing to fire at the rates others experienced in other countries. Had they a well-researched plan, it would have enabled to make quality fact-based decisions supporting rapid growth. The opportunity passed them by as others learned from their mistakes.
Adele Crane has delivered numerous rapid growth assignments across different industries in a combination of new products and new market situations. We understand the impact of sales on the overall business and the need for a highly motivated sales teams to be balanced with organisational demands. Our focus on profit and not just growth sets us apart from most other consultancies in these situations. Her knowledge of the business of sales, rather than the sales process, greatly assists our clients in gaining maximum revenue and profit during times of rapid growth.
Please contact our office to discuss your specific business requirements and discuss how we can assist your rapid growth plans.
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