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“Everyone is doing the same types of things. It's not that the underperforming aren't doing it well, it's just the higher-performing companies are doing it much more effectively. They are doing it much more consistently across all the winning strategies.” — Joe Galvin, Vistage

In this recent Quotable podcast, we hosted Joe Galvin, chief research officer at Vistage, with whom we partnered with to develop the research in Customer Growth: Decisions for the SMB CEO.  The report looks at the strategies and investments high-growth small businesses are implementing across marketing, sales, and service to grow their customers.

In the interview, we asked Galvin about the key differences between high-growth organizations (those with sustained double-digit growth over a two year period) versus the flat to no-growth organizations; his answer: high growth companies tend to have dedicated leadership.

Regardless of how large a business grows, as Galvin explains, dedicated leadership and management across sales, service, and marketing was the biggest influence in performance. Leadership also impacts the application and use of technology:  

“Everyone’s using technology of one flavor or another, but we found that those high-performing organizations, they were 56% more likely to be more effective in using the technology versus those without that are not nearly as effective.”

 

Identifying impactful leadership in a growing business

Simply placing a manager in your sales or service organization will not put your business on a growth trajectory. Dedicated leadership requires specialized skills and experience to really transform the business. It’s the ability to impart a common language or approach in terms of how you work with customers and throughout their journey. Impactful leaders also have the vision and discipline to use technology to capture, analyze, and execute on that data — they’re more likely to have a dedicated application and get more value out of the technology.

As growing business move from paper to spreadsheets to applications, it’s a transition of analogue processes onto a digital platform. Galvin shares that impactful leaders are looking beyond digital transitions to true digital transformation — that is, looking at what and how the business is modelled in terms of established best practices on a vertical, business-size basis, and seeing how to adapt technology to fit the business needs and growth plans.

To hear more insights from Joe Galvin and the research around high-growth companies, listen to the full podcast here:

To learn more about the winning strategies, initiatives, and investments high-growth SMBs are leveraging to find, win, and keep more customers, download the full research report here.

Salesforce can help you find more customers, win their business, and keep them happy so you can grow your business faster than ever. Learn more about our small business CRM solutions or follow us on Twitter @SalesforceSMB and on LinkedIn at Salesforce for Small Business. Join the conversation with #SalesforceEssentials.