Industry News

How willing is your organization to invest in growth?

SmartPulse -- our weekly nonscientific reader poll in SmartBrief on Leadership -- tracks feedback from over 240,000 business leaders. We run the poll question each week in our newsletter.

How willing is your organization to invest in growth?

  • Very. We spend freely to drive the top line: 12%
  • Somewhat. We spend on focused areas only: 60%
  • Not very. Our investments are few and far between: 18%
  • Not at all. We never spend on driving growth: 10%

It takes money to make money. Almost 30% of you report not spending much at all in your growth efforts. I'd venture to guess your companies aren't growing. While it can be hard to carve out the funds to invest, you have to realize you can't cut costs to achieve profitability forever. At some point, there's nothing left to cut. To overcome this dynamic, be deliberate about setting aside funds in your budget for growth spending. With budgeting season around the corner for many of you, think about where your best growth opportunities are and make sure they're fully funded. Then, don't make the mistake of raiding those funds to make up for shortfalls elsewhere. Growth won't happen magically. You need to invest it to catch up with the 70% of organizations out there who are freer with the purse strings.

Mike Figliuolo is managing director of thoughtLEADERS. Before launching his own company, he worked at McKinsey & Co., Capital One and Scotts Miracle-Gro. He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point. He's the author of three leadership books: "One Piece of Paper," "Lead Inside the Box" and "The Elegant Pitch."