The day-to-day demands of running your business can be overwhelming but in order for your business to continue growing successfully, it is vital that you step back for a moment and make sure that you have the right growth strategy in place.

Here are five key growth strategies to consider:

• Diversification – This is a high-risk growth strategy which involves selling new products to new markets. It requires careful planning and thorough market research because both the products and the markets are unfamiliar.

• Market Development – This is a less risky strategy in which new markets are found for existing products and services. The new market could be overseas or a new sector of the domestic market. Simply adapting your product packaging or changing the product slightly could open up new markets.

• Product Development – Another strategy to consider is developing new products and services for existing markets. Although this may appear to be an easier strategy to implement, it requires continuous monitoring and adaptation of products to sustain growth in the prevailing market.

• Market Penetration – You may consider growing your business in the existing market with existing products and services. In order to succeed in this, your business will need to gain the competitive edge and seize a greater percentage of market share. This can be done by making your products and services cheaper than the competition, by increasing marketing of products and also by increasing your customer base through other methods such as loyalty programs and incentives.

• Acquisition – An acquisition growth strategy involves purchasing other businesses with existing products and an established market in order to expand operations. This can be risky and involves significant investment.

The wrong strategy can ruin your business and so it is essential to carefully formulate your growth strategy around your business and the specific marketplace in which it operates.

Ethics… It starts with you

Friday, May 6, 2016 9:33 am

Open any newspaper, look at any news bulletin and South Africa features in a way that makes most of us uncomfortable.

Chief Justice Moegeng Moegeng, speaking at the 14th Victoria and Griffiths Mxenge Memorial Lecture recently, said that until South Africa got its act together, it would be a laughing stock and the prophets of doom would keep saying it was yet another failed African state.

The lack of ethical leadership, the resultant damage to our economy and growing social unrest is demoralising for all of us. The results of the Global Corruption Barometer (GCB), a survey of ‘ordinary people’ released in December last year, revealed that 83% of South Africans polled believed that corruption was increasing and that 79% believed that government was doing a poor job of combatting corruption.

South Africa slid from 67th to 61st place on Transparency International’s (TI) Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2015. South Africa also scored a consistent, low 44 out of 100 in the PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) Corruption Perceptions Index.

But we do not need statistical measures to tell us what we already know, we need action.

Ethical leadership is not just important in government. We all need to take up the ethical leadership challenge in the spheres in which we operate individually. By acting with integrity and following ethical procedures in business, others can be educated and influenced in a positive way.

The ethical leadership challenge our country is facing provides each of us with the opportunity to contribute positively towards building a South Africa that we can be proud of.

“South Africans, it’s now or never. Quicken your conscience to life… You will realise, like I have, that I have been sitting comfortably on a very uncomfortable situation; I have been idling by when my country demanded so much more from me.” – Chief Justice Moegeng Moegeng, April 2016