Growing Pains: Be Prepared


You may not equate strategy and growth with climbing a mountain, but there are certainly parallels and lessons to be learned from both, as the same questions can apply to businesses facing growing pains or to climbers looking to ascend mountain peaks.

Both climbers and businesses face what seem like monumental challenges in planning and strategy. Questions such as what path should I take, what obstacles will I face, and how do I execute my plan all come to mind when trying to be successful and reach the top.

For businesses, this means going back to the old Boy Scout’s motto of “Be Prepared,” and being prepared means developing your strategy along with your growing business. Companies who want to take the next steps in their growth must reevaluate their strategic plan, prepare for obstacles, and execute on goals in order to overcome the pains that often accompany rapid growth.

Prepare Your Plan

Even the best of climbers have to readjust their strategy once they get to the mountain. It is the same with business. A plan that once was good might be outdated when faced with the realities and changes that occur during expansion and growth. Part of being prepared means companies need to re-evaluate their overall plan and goals.

Questions such as “did I reach my old goal?” or “do I need a new approach?” will help lay the foundation to formulate new ideas and plans of action to address market growth and weave into a larger strategy. Businesses who ask these questions can then use their strategy to better prepare for obstacles. No long term vision or immediate goal should be so rigid it can’t be adjusted during times of change and growth.

Prepare for Obstacles

Obstacles are bound to exist whether on a mountain or in the boardroom. Part of overcoming obstacles and being prepared is putting the right strategic framework in place. A well-planned strategy acts as a map for navigating obstacles.

Your strategy should be top-down – connecting managers to employees and employees to tasks, allow for communication across all channels, and provide metrics to see how a business is moving forward and handling the challenges of rapid growth. Additionally, KPIs can act as valuable metrics to address any concerns or growth issues before they happen. A well-planned holistic strategy allows companies to employ strategic management as a means to combat obstacles and be prepared for growth, then execute a plan of action.

Execute Your Goals

Just as a climber must take that first step, so must your organization move forward with a strategy. Companies armed with the right strategic framework are better positioned to execute, and the right strategy can give your business the confidence to move forward and meet goals. Growth in the market – or even a decline – are surmountable problems when the right strategy is in place that allows for flexibility and change when needed. Just as a climber can feel more confident with the right tools in his pack, so can an organization move forward in confidence, executing goals that are based on a sound strategy.

Whether mountain climber or corporate climber, the right strategy equates to being prepared. Growing pains don’t have to hurt. Businesses can use strategy as a means to plan, prepare, and execute any goal at any time, ensuring no matter the mountain they will reach the top.