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Kevin Daum

CEO of Stratford Financial Services, Inc., Alameda, California

Verne Harnish has identified four common growing pains for Fast Growth companies at various stages of development: generating revenue, amassing cash, maintaining gross margins and predicting profitability. Which challenge is weighing most heavily on your company now and how are you working to overcome it?

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Amassing cash is our current growth issue. Our revenue is more than supporting our core business, however it will take a fair sum of capital to develop and execute our national expansion. Our solution is to set the working business on it’s own successful path, then fund the expansion as a start up based upon the working business model.

Verne Harnish has identified three major stumbling blocks for Fast Growth companies: inability of leadership to grow, inability of management and engineers to assemble systems and structures to handle new complexities and growth, inability of the company to position itself within a larger market containing harsh competitors and in-depth strategies. Has your company run up against any of these stumbling blocks? If so, how are you working to resolve the problem?

Our leadership has been growing in leaps and bounds, however there are not a lot of resources with comprehensive plans on how to make the quantum leap to a systemized business. We have found that resource in Verne Harnish’s “Master of Business Dynamics” program. It is providing the tools and information for us to move forward at lightning speed.

What benefits have you reaped from identifying your company’s core principles early in the game and sticking close to those principles? What do you do to keep those core objectives at the forefront of your business strategies?

Teaching new people in our organization what we stand for and how we live our business is the most important step to giving employees independence. As a leader, I see the most basic element of delegation requires trust that they will make decisions befitting the company’s basic precepts. If you don’t establish those tenants up front, you can’t build the required trust.

Do your employees engage in a regular huddle session where they can exchange progress reports and questions? If so, what are the benefits and challenges of such a meeting?

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We meet on a weekly basis on executive, management and departmental levels. The difficulties are scheduling and focus. However, consistency and priority resolve the first problem and Verne has taught us excellent methods for resolving the second.

Visit Stratford Financial Services, Inc. on the Web.

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