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Business Growth: Rebuilding Your Business’ Engine for Tomorrow’s Race

By Jeff Bloch, Chief Growth Officer
With Tom Brennan, Senior Writer


Part 1: Kicking Fear in the A$$

As I talk with executives, particularly those from small to mid-size companies, I hear the same challenge over and over: how can I drive growth in my business without throwing a lot of dollars at it? What worked yesterday may not work tomorrow — it may not even work today. I believe you CAN drive growth inexpensively, but you may have to change your way of thinking. The biggest obstacle to changing your thinking is fear.

Here in Part 1 I want to help you step out of your comfort zone and consider some new ideas. In the posts that follow I will share different types of growth fuel to turbocharge your business’ engine without blowing your budget.

Fear is a liar

FEAR: False Evidence Appearing Real

Fear isn’t something we expect to affect executives and leaders. Aren’t they all confident visionaries blazing trails in the jungles of opportunity? But we’re all human, and management deals with fear like everyone else — maybe more so. Leaders have a lot to worry about: controlling costs, developing staff, keeping the technology current, market shifts, competitive threats, customer train wrecks, employee morale, the home front and more.

Each area of concern has a variety of factors, and leaders are constantly evaluating them all. The wrong decision can be costly to the company and impact many individual lives. This is where FEAR sets in: False Evidence Appearing Real. We weigh all the “evidence” we can: historical patterns, our gut instinct, other peoples’ opinions, (often incomplete) data, best/worst case scenarios and ripple effect analysis. There’s a bombardment of information to consider with every decision. If not by the leader, then by the other leaders who need to weigh in and then those who need to execute the plan.


Limits are all in your mind

Do you remember a PlayStation ad years ago about fleas in a jar? You can still find it on YouTube. Normally fleas can jump up to 13 inches. But when placed in a closed jar about 3 inches tall, they repeatedly jump up and hit the lid. After three days, you can remove the lid and the fleas will NOT jump out of the jar, for life — they’ve been conditioned to jump no higher than the confines of the jar.  Even their offspring won’t jump out!

We’re all subject to conditioning as well, and deal with limits that have been set by a lifetime of bumping our heads against the lids of life. But we don’t have to accept those limits. As the ad says, “Escape the circus and live beyond the limits of the imaginary lid.”

You’re about to exit . . . the Comfort Zone

In her bestselling book Passages: Predictable Crises of Adult Life, Gail Sheehy wrote, “Growth demands a temporary surrender of security.” Over the next few installments in this series, I’m going to ask you to surrender your sense of security temporarily as you consider these ideas. Some will be new to you, others will not. But all can help you drive business growth without a Fortune 500 marketing budget.

Here’s a quick preview:

  • Social growth fuel brings good news and bad news: it’s relatively inexpensive, but it’s new and can be scary.  Especially for the baby boomers at the top of the food chain.
  • Inexpensive growth fuel: think big, but think cheap. Decision Toolbox (DT) is employing a number of effective low cost strategies and I’ll share a few.
  • Hybrid growth fuel involves leveraging channel partners to drive revenue.
  • Personal growth fuel is about working smarter and healthier, which helps you succeed in all areas, including driving growth. We’ll look at efficiency and productivity as well as ergonomics
  • Inspired growth fuel is often discounted but it’s essential. As I wrote in a blog series recently, you need to nurture your “heartspace,” that part of your soul and spirit that both guides your integrity and fuels your motivation.

“Don’t ask for life to be easy, ask for life to be worth it.”  – Dani Johnson

Read on for Part 2

To learn more about Decision Toolbox, please contact us – we’d love to hear from you!

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3 Responses to “Business Growth: Rebuilding Your Business’ Engine for Tomorrow’s Race”

  1. November 26, 2013 at 4:14 am, Using Social Growth Fuel to Rebuild Your Business’ Engine for Tomorrow’s Race | Blog | Decision Toolbox said:

    […] (If you missed Part 1, you can find it here) […]


  2. December 18, 2013 at 5:49 am, Motivating Employees to Extend Social Marketing | Blog | Decision Toolbox said:

    […] (Part 1, Part 2 ) […]


  3. January 06, 2014 at 5:56 am, The Role of Leveraged Growth Fuel in Inexpensive Business Growth | Blog | Decision Toolbox said:

    […] as it was yesterday, and business growth requires new strategies and tactics.  Sound scary? See Part 1 of this series for tips on boosting executive courage. Have a look at Part 2 for the importance of […]


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