At the core of Entrepreneurs' Organization (EO)'s mission is an unwavering commitment to providing entrepreneurs at every stage with the knowledge and tools necessary to scale and grow their business as they achieve new levels of leadership. A total of 287 EO-member companies were named to the 2019 Inc. 5000 list of America's fastest-growing privately held companies. Of those, 21 EO-member companies ranked in the 2019 Inc. 500 list. We asked these growth-focused leaders about the specific strategies that contributed most to their ability to scale. Here's what they shared:
What was the most pivotal factor or business strategy that enabled you to make the Inc. 500 list?
"We attribute Maverick Media's rapid growth in large part to our obsession with creating Standard Operating Procedures, as those documented processes allowed us to outsource, delegate and train new employees and virtual assistants."
"We've worked hard on building a solid foundation for our business so that we can continue to scale efficiently. We tried not to bite off more than we could chew and made a commitment for the long-game wins. We stayed scrappy and laser-focused on the milestones we established--which continue to evolve as we iterate and grow."
"I credit our growth to two things:
- Listening to our customers' wants and needs
- Our absolutely incredible, dedicated team working with those customers daily.
"Two of our core values are 'Continuous Growth' and 'All>ANY.' By listening, we continue to develop and launch new products and services that immediately resonate with customers. At the same time, our team members' dedication to our clients, and to one another, enables us to deliver quickly for our customers. The results tell the rest of the story."
"Charging clients that are in a position to massively scale a percentage of their profit. This was critical for growth because it allowed an unlimited upside on income as long as I produced for my clients. This way, I became part of the business and not just a contractor, empowering me to do more to impact overall profit."
"We refined the product to meet consumer demand for ingredients and packaging. Once we did that, we had a home run as we found the white space in the market and knew our customer well. We solved both a customer need (for delicious cookie dough that is also gluten-free, vegan and nut-free), and a supermarket need (for increased sales in the refrigerated dough section, by bringing a new customer segment to that section). We shot for the stars and kept getting 'yeses'."
"The most important factor was making the leap into starting a new company back in 2015. That pivotal factor led to hiring extraordinary teammates to help us grow. Business is the ultimate team sport: In order to win, you have to assemble a great team. Ours sticks together through wins and losses."
"For us, it's a strong focus on culture. Appreciated, engaged and empowered people require less active management, are far more productive, and become more innovative employees. We made the commitment to define our core values, integrate those values into every applicable aspect of operations, and focus on hiring people into the right roles. Once the people component is solved, the rest becomes 'easy'."
"Our growth trajectory is the result of a relentless focus on creativity, innovation, outstanding client service and company culture. By reengineering our entire enterprise around these bullseyes, from event design and production to the key performance indicators we use to measure success, we've created deeper and stronger relationships with our clients and benefited from increased referrals from them. In expanding the breadth of corporate events and conferences that we manage, we've used these strategic goals to ground and prioritize every activity--from business development and marketing to recruiting and hiring."
"Our most pivotal factor for growth has been building out our team. When you're intentional about hyper-growth, you have to find leaders who can scale, or things start to break down. Building out the teams, systems and processes that take you from a startup to a large company are critical. Our leaders have allowed us to be aggressive and sustain triple-digit growth."
"As our revenue increased, we grew with the revenue. We increased personnel to ensure that clients' cases were progressing and closing in a timely manner. As you scale, it's critical to start delegating all lower-level tasks so you can concentrate on the $500 or $1,000 per hour tasks. We weren't always great at hiring, so we researched and studied how to hire effectively. I believe that delegation and finding the right people as we grew was the key to our success."