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Life in the Fast Lane

Are you dreaming of explosive growth during your first year of business? Be careful what you wish for.

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This story appears in the March 2004 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

You want your business to be a success from day one-with customers beating down your door and the media reporting on your explosive popularity. Or do you?

While a growth explosion in your first year of business can be an ego boost, it can also be a huge challenge. Jerry White, director of the Caruth Institute for Entrepreneurship at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, suggests that entrepreneurs take inventory of their own businesses before deciding on a growth plan. "You can do in five years what it normally takes 15 years to do," he says. "But don't sign up for that if you don't know what you're getting into."

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