CEOs are often at the helm, navigating through murky waters and steering their organisations towards sustainable growth and relevance. Recognising and acting upon crucial business inflection points is critical in this journey. We delve into the dynamics of business growth across four pivotal inflection points, providing a strategic framework for CEOs to survive and thrive in the marketplace.

1. The business of yesterday: Capitalising on your legacy

The business of yesterday encompasses your established market presence, core capabilities, current customer base, and the products and services that have defined and distinguished your organisation. It represents your legacy and the foundation upon which your company was built. However, resting on laurels is not an option in the fast-paced business world. CEOs must seek hidden opportunities within this segment while identifying and eliminating redundancies.

Actionable insights:

  • Optimise: Enhance operational efficiency in delivering your current offerings.
  • Reframe: Pivot your existing customer base towards emerging opportunities aligned with the company’s future direction.
  • Retire or Sell: Divest redundant capabilities or assets to free up resources for more promising ventures.

2. The business of today: Mastering the present

At the heart of your organisation’s growth strategy lies the business of today. This segment is the critical nexus where maintaining relevance, navigating the current market realities, and preparatory thinking for the future converge. It is the zone of action where the CEO must ensure that the company’s value proposition and business model are not only preserved but expanded.

Strategic moves:

  • Lengthen, widen, and deepen: Scale your value proposition through organic growth and strategic acquisitions.
  • Investment: Allocate resources judiciously to fortify your market position while seeding future growth initiatives.

3. The business of tomorrow: Strategising for the future

The business of tomorrow is your forward-looking strategy, characterised by scaling relevant core capabilities and making strategic bets on innovation. It involves investing in new products, services, and solutions that promise future value. This phase requires a delicate balance between leveraging your existing strengths and venturing into new territories.

Key activities:

  • Scale and innovate: Continue to grow your core business while experimenting with new offerings.
  • Build and acquire: Augment your strategic assets, workforce, and capabilities to support a diversified portfolio of growth options. Embrace failure as a part of the innovation process, with a keen focus on achieving breakthrough successes.

4. Beyond the horizon: Exploring the unknown

Beyond the horizon lies uncharted territory, filled with both opportunities and challenges. This phase demands CEOs to be visionaries, sensing and responding to emerging trends, technological shifts, customer needs, and competitive dynamics. It’s about staying ahead of the curve by fostering a culture of continuous exploration and experimentation.

Forward-thinking strategies:

  • Rapid observation and orientation: Stay attuned to the evolving landscape through proactive research and analysis.
  • Invest in next-business opportunities: Cultivate a portfolio of future business ventures by encouraging innovation and risk-taking.

Successfully navigating these inflection points requires a nuanced understanding of where your business stands and where it aims to go. It calls for strategic foresight, operational excellence, and a culture of continuous innovation. CEOs must not only direct resources towards optimising current operations but also invest in future growth avenues, all while maintaining the agility to pivot as market dynamics evolve.

Step Advisory helps leaders effectively manage these transitions to ensure their companies remain relevant, competitive, and poised for sustained growth.

Chad Schaefer

Author Chad Schaefer

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