The past three years or so have witnessed the bleakest business climate of many of our lifetimes. Jobs and budgets have been cut, often to the bone, as companies have looked to weather the “Great Recession” and its aftereffects. Yet companies both large and small are coming around to an inescapable conclusion: that you can’t slash yourself into long-term success any more than you can diet yourself into a muscle building championship. Instead, the direction is simple: Reigniting revenue growth is the business imperative of the day and of the decade.
Growth may be imperative, but it’s naïve to assert that costs no longer matter. We must both drive revenue growth and continuously improve profitability from that growth. Of course, this process is easier said than done and achieving it requires smart investments in resources, plus a fundamentally different game plan for growth than the one that many organizations applied during the first decade of the new millennium.
It’s hard to fault corporate executives for hesitating to invest again in today’s business climate. The fact is, however, that the smartest companies create opportunity out of turmoil. Many are already moving aggressively ahead with strategies for growth ignition in the competitive times ahead.
A 2011 survey from The Conference Board, a premier global business research firm, underscored the increasing importance of growth as a strategic imperative for corporations worldwide. According to the results ...