The book review for this week is Growth IQ by Tiffani Bova.
Bova has written a powerful book that describes the optimal paths to business growth in today’s marketplace. She backs up her theories with excellent case studies using relevant businesses and their current levels of success and/or failure.
My takeaways from this book are the ten paths to business growth shown in the list and diagram below and the knowledge that most of these paths are not stand alone. Most business growth comes from applying a number of these paths in a strategically informed sequence. In fact, context, combination, and sequence can be the key to success!
A Lada may get you from point A to point B (if you are lucky), but a Lamborghini is a highly tuned engineering marvel! Not only will it get you from point A to point B, it will do it quickly, efficiently, and in style! It is a thing of beauty!
Just like a Lamborghini, a finely tuned, high performance business is a beautiful thing!
Understanding what to monitor in your business to ensure that it is finely tuned and highly performing is not an easy task. As you can imagine, there are as many opinions on the definition of high performance as there are businesses. And for good reason.
Customer first service mantras have been around so long that we are sick of hearing about them . . . until we personally go through a new dismal customer service experience and are reminded how important the customer experience really is!
The truth is that business leaders must not only build a customer centric culture in their organization but they must constantly maintain this culture. It only takes one bad experience to tarnish a company’s reputation which can take years to rebuild!
My Honda Experience
Eliminating waste and unnecessary cost inside your business is critical to its long term growth, profitability and success. However, primarily focusing on reducing cost will eventually kill your company.
As Gordon Bethune said, “You can make a pizza so cheap, nobody will eat it. You can make an airline so cheap, nobody will fly it.” The king of corporate turnarounds, Greg Brenneman, supported this with his statement “a maniacal focus on trimming cost can lose you more revenue than you gain.”
This was certainly my experience back in 1998 when I was brought in by a client to redo engineering work that another contractor had outsourced overseas. The contractor was looking to reduce their engineering costs by sending the bulk of their engineering to a lower cost country. Unfortunately, they did not control this work close enough. When the engineering was submitted to the customer, not only did it not meet expectations, it caused the client to loose so much confidence in the contractor that the contract for the work was pulled and awarded to another engineering company.