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Room to Grow

Yes, even in the most stagnant economy, it's possible to expand.

This story appears in the June 2003 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Does this sound familiar? Your markets are growing slowly or not at all. You lack cash to buy another company, and international markets look worse than the domestic ones. If that's you, pick up a copy of How to Grow When Markets Don't (Warner). Management consultants Adrian Slywotzky and Richard Wise, along with co-author Karl Weber, present "demand innovation," a strategy for use in slow- or no-growth markets and economies.

Demand innovation advises companies to creatively identify unmet customer needs so they can increase sales without the risk of entering new markets or attracting new customers. That's not easy, the authors say. Inflexible corporate culture, lack of time and customer reluctance are common obstacles. But using examples from industries such as autos and insurance, they show it can be done.

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