The CFO Alliance Blog

Is your enterprise prepared to drive growth in 2018?

According to our most recent CFO Sentiment Study, corporate growth is a major theme driving decision making at middle market enterprises. In fact, 65% of CFOs identified top line revenue growth as their top priority. While a focus on growth is both healthy and necessary, the myriad paths available to achieving it each present their own unique challenges. The ubiquitous issues pertaining to timing, technology and team can actually be amplified when determining appropriate growth strategies. The questions you ask and the manner in which you evaluate the answers can go a long way toward revealing what’s optimal for your business.

The following are a few questions you may wish to consider in your pursuit of additional revenues in 2018:

Regardless of which growth strategy you choose to pursue, a thorough evaluation of your current position is always advantageous. Take an especially hard look at your financials and IT infrastructure. In addition, ask yourself:

  • Are our systems robust and scalable?
  • Do we have current market research and competitive intelligence data available to support our decision making processes?
  • What’s the current status of our executive team? Are there any gaps in our leadership structure? Are there some particularly strong people we can rely on to execute consistently?

Thinking through these and other internal issues will be crucial to making informed and appropriate growth strategy decisions for your team and enterprise.

Likewise, understanding and defining realistic growth metrics for your company and industry is imperative to setting and attaining your growth objectives. Therefore, it is important to have a solid understanding of industry trends and as much information and intelligence on competitors as possible. While growth rates are the obvious metric by which to compare performance vis a vis other businesses in your space, they should always be evaluated in context, paying close attention to to what is ultimately driving the resulting numbers. Similarly, while often indicative of an enterprise’s relative performance, year over year growth may not always tell the entire story. Clear insight into where growth is coming from (product innovation, marketing, M&A, geographic expansion, etc.) as well as what’s expected for the industry as a whole is crucial to both strategy selection and results measurement.

For a more indepth discussion of these and other issues related to enterprise growth strategies in 2018, please consider joining The CFO Alliance for our Q4 Roundtable Series “Buy, Build or Borrow, Driving Growth through Assets, Acquisitions & Alliances in a city near you.

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