During this week's Accelerator session, Mark Fenwick drew on his extensive commercial experience as he demonstrated how to grow your organisation. His presentation of big questions to the whole group was balanced with valuable opportunities for small group discussions, where everyone could focus on what growth meant for them. And specifically what changes they would need to implement to make this happen.
Initially, a group exercise identified that all organisations are different, for example the number of staff doesn’t necessarily relate to turnover, or that being an older organisation doesn’t have to mean that you have more influence. This showed that all organisations have different aspects of their business that they want to grow. Mark emphasised that the key point is to identify exactly what it is that you want to grow, then think about what needs to change to create that growth. He urged everyone to remember that growth is all about change, and that it is impossible to grow by staying the same.
The next big question we needed to address was ‘how big is big?’ i.e. how big do you want the growth to be? And so how big do you want that change to be? This will affect the goals or targets that you have for your growth. For many people in the room they were seeking to build their impact or influence on society. This meant identifying exactly who they were trying to influence and how. Different audiences meant different changes were needed.
Finally on the attached copy of Mark’s presentation you can see his ‘due diligence growth model’ This model, drawn from Mark’s commercial experience, articulates the growth from a small company to public company that has garnered interest from public shareholders. The basic idea being that it goes from a freelancer who has no interest for an investor because they are building their own work, through a small team who eventually, while building up a reputation, looks for an outside investor to develop their business. This then grows up until level 8 when they become a public company floated on the stock market.
It was an insightful session that offered opportunities to think in more detail about exactly what we need to do to achieve effective growth whatever our organisational focus.