The Growth Curve:
Sustaining a Good Thing

Of all the points along the business growth curve, this one is an oft-touted favorite. The company has survived the early chaos of starting something new and navigated the rocky waters that accompany rapid growth. Things are settling into a rhythm and work just seems to flow.

The unique value of your business has been established and processes are in place to deliver on it. In other words, you’ve got a good thing going, and you know it.

But wait – the pragmatic little voice in the back of your head protests – nothing this good lasts forever, right?

Remember the Roman empire, board games, compact discs, cell phones the size of your arm.

The warning signs are easily recognizable: an over-reliance on process stifles risk-taking, employees become complacent at best or downright disengaged at worst, the flame of innovation that drove the organization dwindled to a mere flicker. Unfortunately, the comfortability of predictable success lends itself to these sorts of outcomes.

Maybe you’ve already reached this point and are teetering on the edge, fearing the impending backslide into the land of chaos.  Or you’re feeling wary, uncertain and even a little bit fearful because you’re well aware of this painful reality:

Maintaining status quo is much harder than growing or failing.

But wait – the optimistic little voice in the back of your head shouts – there is hope. You don’t have to fail. You don’t even have to maintain the status quo. You can, in fact, continue to run a vibrant business in a sustainable way.

How?

Ultimately, it comes down to finding the sweet spot. The balance between innovating, saying yes to creativity, and pushing the envelope vs. committing to and applying processes that keep the organization on track and running efficiently.

MyObjectives helps you do exactly that. A complacency crusher, the software gets teams talking about goals, the work plan and how they can help.

By following an industry best practice of frequent review and communication about what is working well and where opportunities for improvement exist, organizations using MyObjectives can keep the spirit of growth alive period after period. They do so in a stable and supported way, across all levels of the organization.

Working at the grassroots level

Using MyObjectives, every employee can assess their progress and apply lessons learned as they draft their objectives for the next period. Was the number of objectives too high or too low, was the balance of objectives in regards to company priorities set just right, was there work that didn’t get completed this period that should be carried forward into the following period?

At the team level

Teams can assess the effectiveness of their contributions in relation to other teams across the organization.  How did their score stack up to other teams, was work that was coordinated with other teams successfully carried out, did the team’s overall progress propel the organization’s primary objectives?

At the leadership level

Using the dashboard, execs and managers can see exactly what progress was made and by whom during that period.  Equipped with this information, they can make strategic changes as needed, revisit medium- and long-term goals, and set period-specific initiatives to really rev up engagement.

Time after time, period after period, this process of setup, do, and review can keep an organization in the sweet spot. How long you stay in that sweet spot is really up to you.

And while we will admit to the truth that good things rarely last forever, we will also submit that with the right process (and a little software to help), it is possible to sustain a good thing for a very, very long time.

Check out the earlier parts to our Growth Curve series if you haven’t already

Solving Early Chaos
Delegating Without Fear
Engaging Spaced-Out Employees

 

 

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Roger Longden

Roger Longden leads the management consulting firm, There Be Giants. His team develops high-growth strategies for his clients that align and engage their people, their teams and their overall organization to deliver successful outcomes.

MyObjectives

The first team-based solution that provides real-time feedback of your team’s drive toward success. myobjectives.com