Archive for 'Scaling'

The Turnaround of H-P – Smaller Company Lessons

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There was a great article last week in the WSJ – H-P Overhaul Shows Promise by Spencer Ante. I’ve summarized below some great takeaways to consider. It certainly inspired me to revisit the operational plan I’m executing in the businesses I’m scaling.

 Symptoms & Operational Actions
  1.  The sales force was struggling with proposals based on Oracle software. Quotes ...

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Why Companies Grow But Fail to Scale

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I’ve been delivering some presentations in February and March about scaling private companies. I’ve had great positive feedback from attendees. I thought it would be useful summarizing 10 quick reasons companies are failing to scale and what to do about it. But first, think of scaling as five outcomes you want to achieve: Growth, Alignment, Predictability, ...

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The Sales Profiles of the 20 Year Old Company

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Every company is different. Every business has a lifecycle. Hopefully you will recognize some or all of your company’s profile in these graphs.

The question that needs to be asked is always where do I go from here? But first you ...

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Adding Professional Services to Your Product Business

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It seems so obvious why wouldn’t you have done it already? Well, rolling out a services business on the back of your product business requires careful consideration. I’ve done it several times and I’m currently helping a client execute the strategy for 2014. Here are some pointers to consider. I hope they save you time:

15 Quick Tips
  1. Appoint a ...

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Is Your Balance Sheet Fit For Scaling?

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Raising venture capital immediately transforms your balance sheet into a platform for scaling. Of course failure is still a high probability. Especially if you execute the wrong things. But that immediate injection of capital allows management to roll out their planned tactics. In effect to travel from one balance sheet to the next. In extreme circumstances eg ...

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Scaling Thoughts from Howard Schultz

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This weekend there was a great piece in the WSJ by Alexandra Wolfe about Howard Schultz the founder of Starbucks. There were so many great inspirational points on scaling a business, I felt the need to trap them here. I’ve added my take in italics:

Vision: Howard always had a vision. It started in Milan where he was ...

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Scaling a B2B Software Company

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Of course advice on scaling any business is dependent on the stage you have reached. So let’s frame this post in terms of size. I’m going to assume your software business is generating annual sales between $5m and $25m. And you want to scale to $100m. The following list highlights what most software companies are not doing well:

Simple Story ...

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Hyper-Growth – Initiatives to Consider Part 2 Recruitment

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If you are in a hyper-growth state, growing at 25% to 250% per annum, trying to add dozens of new employees, you are entering a battle for talent. The ability to bring stability to that growth will be largely dependent on the talent you bring in. They can’t all be java developers! Your story will need to ...

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Hyper-Growth – Initiatives to Consider – Part 1 The University

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I came to Boston in October 2001 from London to manage a software business called Teamstudio. In the summer of the following year it would be listed at #91 on the Inc. 500 list, with a 4 year growth of 1888%, that’s 111% per annum! But that was just the start of our problems.

The current Inc. 5000 ...

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The New Sales Playbook for Manufacturers – 5 Moves

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 Last week the WSJ highlighted a fascinating study published by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG). The study claimed:

  • Adjusted for productivity, US average labor costs by 2015 will beat Japan by 18%, Germany 34% and France 35%.
  • It details how declining energy costs—the result of the shale boom—are giving the U.S. ...

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