In working with a number of rapidly growing companies,
organizations, and school systems over the years, it has been
interesting to see several common risk factors for their ongoing
success. Many have survived these challenges, others have not. These
challenges are broad and deep and could easily be a focus for longer
- They have a since of invincibility. In other words, cockiness
and a false sense of business acumen and/or market viability due to
immediate or quick success. This success and feeling of invincibility
had been typically measured by individual financial wealth accumulation
and fame – not long-term positioning for organizational success.
- They have not moved their talent to address current and future
needs of the company. This does not mean firing the loyal employees who
have gotten them to where they are today. Rather, it means helping them
to grow, re-tool, and expand to meet current and future demands.
- They are blurry or not in total alignment relative to their
long-term strategic direction. And their people and organizational
strategy is equally foggy – as they don’t know what they need going
forward. Thinking and planning for the long-term is key. Also, many
have a planning horizon which is simply too short. Things sneak up on
them, and ‘images are closer than they appear,’ such as competition,
market swings, and customer buying habits. Let’s face it – the world is
moving FAST – and we have to plan, respond, and drive toward this.
- They are not as diligent as they need to be – on all fronts. Buying
new companies, merging with companies, launching new products and
services, establishing close partnerships and alignments must be
anchored in due diligence. The operative word is diligence.
- They are not structured for scale. Their operational and technical
infrastructure is not prepared to support an increased span and scope
of work. Without building a strong foundation, they will have demand
and customer need without an ability to deliver with the same level of
quality their clients have grown to expect.
Take a look at these, and ask yourself – does my company, team,
organization, or school have any of these tendencies? If so, they
are certainly worth exploring and getting you and your team aligned on
how to ‘fix’ them.