Formula for SMART Growth for Technology-based Firms

In my experience, I have identified the following characteristics of businesses that have been successful in emerging from start-up phase into a sustained growth stage with efficient, managed growth. These fundamental characteristics of successful growth businesses include:

  • Strategy-based
  • Market-based
  • Alignment-based
  • ROI-based
  • Technology Innovation-based

Additional success attributes include a placing a priority on the following building blocks (not necessarily in this sequence):

  1. Emphasis on accountability
  2. Emphasis on action-orientation
  3. Emphasis on cash flow
  4. Emphasis on client acquisition
  5. Emphasis on client service
  6. Emphasis on empowerment
  7. Emphasis on leadership
  8. Emphasis on listening
  9. Emphasis on metrics
  10. Emphasis on perseverance
  11. Emphasis on prioritization
  12. Emphasis on quality
  13. Emphasis on relationships
  14. Emphasis on results
  15. Emphasis on root cause analysis

While formalities like organization structure, policies, and procedures are necessary to some degree for any successful business, it is imperative that there is not too much focus on certain aspects of growing a technology business that will ultimately impede growth. Based on my experience, I recommend that leaders implement:

  1. Just enough communication
  2. Just enough governance
  3. Just enough information
  4. Just enough infrastructure
  5. Just enough oversight
  6. Just enough planning
  7. Just enough process
  8. Just enough resources
  9. Just enough structure
  10. Just enough technology

Of course, any experienced business leader recognizes that maintaining a consistent focus on each of these elements is a daunting task. I will provide additional details and guidelines on each of these best practices in future blog posts. Please contact me with questions and to share best practices from your own personal experiences in growing successful businesses.

— By Jack Spain

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