The Key to Exponential Growth

If you want to make a strategy really work, and to create exceptional growth, then look at three key factors in the chart below. An action plan is the ‘sine qua non’ of course, but these three factors will add significant power. A distinctive strategy keeps you out of commodity, ‘me-too’, price competition and gives your customers more value. Capable leadership keeps the organization moving and prevents it from falling into chaos. And an organization sharply-focused on the strategy enables great progress with minimal resources.

Ven diagram

If there are only two of the three, a critical aspect of performance will be missing:

  • A capable leader with a very focused organization will lack the speed that a sharp strategy provides. A business services client had a strong leader with an organization that measured everything they did, and continually hit their activity numbers. Yet their profits continued to languish until we uncovered a surprisingly simple way they could differentiate them from their competitors, raise prices, and delight customers with significantly better value. Profits quickly took off.
  • A sharply-focused organization with a distinctive strategy won’t have the traction provided by capable leadership. We’ve all seen departments and companies where weak leadership resulted in out of control pandemonium—where everyone had a different take on what was holding them back and spinning their wheels. Even in real team environments, you must have leadership to make headway.
  • A strong leader with a distinctive strategy but a diffused organization will lack the torque necessary to make sure and steady progress. The worst is when people go to work, do their jobs and go home. The best is when strategy, structure, processes, and behaviors are moving with deliberate conviction. I really enjoy working with companies when alignment comes together because it releases energy no one knew was there. When you take the strategy right down to the level of what people do and how they are paid, the organization’s torque is simply stunning.


I’ve worked with organizations to make measurable improvements in each of these factors, and sometimes all three. Together they create a culture of high performance and drive faster growth and value. If you’re serious about hitting your strategic objectives this year and in the future, you have to invest in making these factors prominent parts of your organization’s DNA.