Take the Growth Challenge with Us

Robert Levin

A few months ago I wrote about not doing business as usual. Since then, I have spoken with several dozen business owners that are, in fact, making 2011 a big year for change. They are re-positioning products to capitalize on changes in their industries, acquiring competitors and developing new lines of business. But I have heard from many more colleagues who have said things like “It is February and I am already behind on my numbers” and “I can’t find the time to think about new initiatives.” Time, according to John Lennon, is what happens when you are busy making other plans. Personally, I wish I was spending more time on developing plans for the dozen or so big ideas I have in my head.

So I am saying it here, in front of 90,000 fellow owners and executives: I am allocating at least 15 percent of my time to working on big ideas. For me, that is time not spent on email (if it is important, they will call), taking meetings to “catch up” (a luxury), or even helping my team (they will figure it out). In addition, because not all ideas need to be new and big, I am encouraging my team to be bolder and take more risks; mistakes are encouraged (well, they are if you are trying to be bold).

Jack Killion, private equity fund manager and serial entrepreneur, who and successfully developed companies in a range of sectors, makes a great point. If your business stagnates, it will not be around for very long. As someone who’s been there and done that, he also offers some valuable advice, “Every successful business person I have ever met had some smart people around to share thinking. When you do decide to shift into a growth mode, give some thought to putting together a strategic advisory board with which you can brainstorm.”

What are you doing to grow this year? How are you pushing the envelope? Do you want to put a stake in the ground and make a commitment or declaration?

Rob Levin, publisher, The New York Enterprise Report
Copyright 2011. Author retains ownership. All rights reserved.

Category: Entrepreneurship
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