For all of our collaborative technologies and connectivity, businesses today remain worlds apart when it comes to the topic of growth and how to deal with the challenges growth brings.
Some company leaders choose to measure growth in terms of profit, while board members at other businesses see geographic expansion as the priority. Some businesses blame themselves when they don't grow as expected--believing their lack of entrepreneurial spirit or restricted skillsets are holding them back, while others believe it to be external factors such as competition and economic uncertainty that prevent their growth.
Needless to say, for such a simple word, 'growth' is a more complex topic than first meets the eye and business leaders are certainly not always speaking the same language when it comes up for discussion.
The journey to growth
Recent global research by MORAR Consulting and Epicor Software Corporation has explored the different obstacles, stimulants and even definitions of growth throughout the global business community. The journeys businesses embark on, in order to grow, are different across the globe and some regions and sectors are more optimistic about their prospects than others. However, there are many similarities. Despite the varying business landscapes, 96 per cent of businesses surveyed across the globe admit they face significant obstacles to growth.
In mature markets, there is a strong inclination to blame external factors if a business is experiencing barriers to growth. Businesses operating in these markets consider economic uncertainty to be a major obstacle; with two-fifths of businesses in the UK and nearly half of businesses in the USA believing this holds them back.
Those operating in emerging markets however, are likely to see themselves as the barrier to their own success, rather than blaming external factors. Businesses in India are among the most likely to be concerned that they lack the ability to meet changing customer requirements as they grow. Similarly, compared to just nine per cent of Canadian businesses, one-in-five businesses in China are concerned that a lack of entrepreneurial spirit could restrict their growth.
Chinese businesses, perhaps unsurprisingly, place a strong emphasis on technological leadership, with 68 per cent of business leaders in China viewing technology as a key stimulant to growth. In Germany and India however, a skilled workforce is a higher priority, suggesting that in these regions...