Through surveys and available data, we've examined hundreds of small businesses and come away with six archetypal sets of practices and characteristics that we believe are representative of most growth companies operating today.
The qualifications were simple: Companies had to be domestically owned, privately held, for-profit and have shown net capacity growth over at least two years, with an employee size in 2015 of 10 to 1,000.
Forward Thinkers surge ahead in growth and profits by being aggressive in adopting new technologies and processes, setting high targets and expanding proactively. While that high growth rate isn’t easily financed without outside funding, the Forward Thinkers seem to have little problem finding investors -- which may explain why they have unusually influential boards of directors.
- Forward Thinkers tend to be in mature industries.
- They lead the Entrepreneur360™ in being driven by new production technologies and processes.
- They set the highest average annual growth targets among Entrepreneur 360™ companies.
- They expand proactively.
- They are more likely than their peers to prioritize input from their boards of directors.
- Their focus tends to be more international than local.
It’s no surprise that technological and process innovation can rocket a company to success, particularly in mature industries that may have become sleepy. But fast, innovation-fueled growth also calls for extra attention on company components that may become stressed by the pace of change. What’s more, managers at cutting-edge firms need to be prepared to deal with what may be conflicting direction from outside investors and other stakeholders.
Bai Brands, LLC
Gazelle Globalization Group
Her Campus Media
United By Blue
Votto Vines Importing
Y Media Labs