120 Days; 6 + 1 Key Books; How Companies Win
September 5, 2012
Crazy Busy; Ferrari Brains; Fastest Growing Companies; Executive ADD
September 13, 2012

Sir Martin Sorrell Tips; Scaling Hyper-Growth; Significant Overcapacity Warning

"…keeping you great"


Significant Overcapacity — this was one of nine key points the CEO of the world's largest ad agency made during his breakfast presentation this morning in Sydney, confirming what we've been exclaiming at our Summits and workshops. And WPP's Sir Martin Sorrell would have some visibility into the market with 340+ of the Global 500 as clients. In almost every industry there is simply more competition and thus more supply precisely because China, India, Brazil, and the other fast growth economies are all ramping up their production and service capacities. And the internet lets anyone compete anywhere.

Focus on Marketing/Revenue — and because of this overcapacity, marketing is a critical function – with organizations needing to focus more on revenue growth as a path toward profitability than continuing to focus on the supply side of the business. I encourage you to download Olgivy's "4Es of Marketing" document (Olgivy is a WPP company) and bring it to your next marketing meeting.

Google is Largest Ad Supplier — and this year Google will become the largest supplier of media buys for WPP at around $2.3 billion. What he thinks is underutilized is radio, noting that people have more "ear-time" than "eyeball time" available. Apple announced today that they are aggressively moving into the radio space to compete with Pandora. Overall, WPP's new media purchases will represent 32% of their ad purchases.

Significant Shortage — in turn, even though 1.4 billion people are moving into the middle class, Sorrell sees a significant shortage in quality talent for most companies. Again, (guerilla) marketing is a critical function in helping recruit talent i.e. Atlassian's clever bus tour of Europe to just hire 15 engineers I reported on in my latest Growth Guy column. It's also why it's imperative for firms to master the application of LEAN to their companies so they can double revenue with the same head count over the next 3 – 5 years and give back half the gains to employees (frontline) in the way of a 50% wage increase. GOAL: Less people paid more, but a lower total wage cost.

One-Page Plan Fuels Growth — After years of building their brand in Canada, Nurse Next Door has launched their first operational location in the US. While they have 8 US home care franchises signed (they are seeking more), their first US location opened its doors early this month and quickly signed on their first clients. Notes CEO John DeHart, "We certainly attribute our success in launching our system in the US to our diligent focus on developing and using our One Page Plan. For the past year, we have been starting each weekly STORM with a thorough review of our one page plan, we have each executive team member armed with a laminated copy and we dive deep into it with our teams every week. This maniacal focus on our One Page Plan has helped us achieve what is a milestone for our organization – launching our first of many US locations."

Scaling Hyper-Growth — and thanks to Scott Allison, CEO, Teamly, for his Forbes blog highlighting the impact the Rockefeller Habits have had on his hyper-growth firm. Notes, Allison, a Scottish technology entrepreneur in Silicon Valley, on why Mastering the Rockefeller Habits might not have the same profile as Good to Great "Perhaps people read this book and want to keep it to themselves on the basis they don't want their competitors finding out!" Thank you Cameron Herold for turning Scott onto my book.

Verne Harnish
Verne Harnish
Verne Harnish is founder of the world-renowned Entrepreneurs’ Organization (EO) and chaired for fifteen years EO’s premiere CEO program, the “Birthing of Giants” and WEO’s “Advanced Business” executive program both held at MIT. Founder and CEO of Gazelles, a global executive education and coaching company with over 150 coaching partners on six continents, Verne has spent the past three decades helping companies scale-up. The “Growth Guy” syndicated columnist, he’s also the Venture columnist for FORTUNE magazine. He’s the author of Scaling Up (Rockefeller Habits 2.0); Mastering the Rockefeller Habits; and along with the editors of Fortune, authored The Greatest Business Decisions of All Times," for which Jim Collins wrote the foreword. Verne also chairs FORTUNE Magazine’s annual Leadership and Growth Summits and serves on several boards including chairman of The Riordan Clinic and the newly launched Geoversity. He is an investor in many scale-ups. A father of four, he enjoys piano, tennis, and magic as a card-carrying member of the International Brotherhood of Magicians.