In business, growth is an imperative, not an option. But only one in ten companies succeeds in achieving sustained, profitable growth. Growth strategy is at the heart of what we’ve done at Bain for more than 40 years. We help companies to reach full potential in their core business and pursue adjacencies that strengthen the core using a repeatable formula.
Growth is hard. Over the past decade, approximately 90% of companies worldwide failed to achieve sustained, profitable growth. We help companies seeking to join the elite group of sustained value creators by turning three common pitfalls into opportunities:
We view growth in the context of the Focus-Expand-Redefine (F-E-R) cycle, which nearly every large enterprise moves through over time.
More strategic errors come from inadequate self-awareness than any other cause. Many management teams do not agree on the core and some have never even talked about it. In the focus phase, companies concentrate on building their core business to reach their full potential. They grow revenue, cut costs, improve operations, leverage differentiated capabilities and assets to build competitive advantage and develop innovations in their core products.
In the expand phase, companies take advantage of these capabilities and market positions to move into adjacent markets. They seek out new customer segments, new geographies, new distribution channels and new-but-related product lines. Adjacency moves offer one of the most effective ways for companies to achieve repeated bursts of new growth.
We help clients accurately determine which adjacent businesses will add the most growth and value—while ensuring companies build off of a strong core and avoid overreaching—using a repeatable formula.
At some point, many companies find their growth and profitability tapering off or even declining. Whether due to market saturation, shifting profit pools or a change in the competitive or technological landscape, this is when a company moves into phase three and must redefine its core.
During the redefinition phase, we help executives renew company strategy and capabilities. This work entails looking deep within their organizations to find undervalued, unrecognized or underutilized assets that can serve as new platforms for sustainable growth.
No matter the phase, successful growth relies heavily on management and frontline execution. We apply results delivery approach to generate consensus across teams by jointly developing and prioritizing growth strategies.