Once a company reaches 50-100 employees, growth creates an interesting and seemingly unfair challenge. Having the opportunity to grow is the result of – and reward for – great success. Only successful founders build organizations that attract investors. Only companies with substantial capital have the opportunity to quickly double in size and revenue.
But after a large capital infusion, the next level is not a baby step. It is a giant leap – one that often requires a significant transformation – with a new or evolved vision, strategy, leadership, talent level, structure, and culture. Private equity backed growth is one of the most consistent examples of “what got you here won’t get you there.” Continue reading “Growth is a paradox.”
“We are really good at analyzing markets, financials, and growth potential. We are not as good analyzing the people part.”
“I spend a lot of effort finding the right investments for us, and then I spend all of my time on the phone dealing with people issues.”
We hear comments like these frequently from private equity firms and board members of private equity portfolio companies. In the private equity arena, where the ability to maximize impact and ROI is largely dependent on speed of growth – getting bogged down by people issues can be costly – and spending hours dealing with leadership issues can be really (really) frustrating. Continue reading “I’m an Investor, Not a Therapist”
How healthy were you going into this crisis? Just as this virus exposes underlying health issues in those it attacks, the economic fallout and forced changes in how we work (for those of us fortunate enough to continue to work) are exposing and exacerbating the issues we ignored, avoided, put-off in our organizations.
Dysfunction does not go away in a crisis although it may hide temporarily under the false cover of a team pulling together to survive. As the uncertainty and stress of this crisis linger, old haunts return: team dysfunction, communication break-downs, lack of clarity, poor management and more.
One silver lining this crisis presents, however, is that every organization has been presented an invitation to hit the reset button: Continue reading “Emerging Healthy”
This crisis, against all of our early hopes, has proven it will last – it’s an ultra-marathon we face with an unknown duration, curves in the route we can’t see around, and surprise hurdles thrown in just when we think we might start to hit our stride. But, when I think about it, so are the missions we serve each day and the visions we set out to achieve. Continue reading “The Long Journey Forward”
The nonprofit sector was struggling before COVID-19 struck a blow of unimaginable force. Executive Directors were already overwhelmed, with many questioning their ability to stay energized and continue to lead. Fundraising was a constant race with uncertain gains in a competitive and continually growing field of nonprofits. A culture of scarcity had many organizations stuck in a loop of doing more with less only to do even more with even less, and so on. Continue reading “Rising Out of Crisis”