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Mighty Morphing

A new survey shows leading businesses have one thing in common: change.

This story appears in the November 1996 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Change is in the air, or so it seems. Over the past year, 85 percent of all small businesses reported changing the way they do business, according to the recently released Survey of Small and Mid-Sized Businesses--Trends for 1996 conducted by Arthur Andersen's Enterprise Group and National Small Business United. In addition, 97 percent of fast-growing businesses (defined by the survey as businesses that increased their revenues by at least 10 percent over the year) reported that things, they are a-changin'.

Why the metamorphoses? When asked about their greatest challenge this year, survey respondents answered overwhelmingly with a single word: competition. "Now that the economy has improved, [entrepreneurs] are focused on competing with other businesses in their industries," says Laurence Hayward, marketing director with Arthur Andersen's Enterprise Group. "To do that, they have to change the way they've traditionally done things."

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