According to US Census data there are approximately 28 million firms in the US. A whopping 22 million firms have NO employees, and average only about $42,000 per year in sales. This leaves 6 million firms with 1 or more employees.
On the other side of the Scale, only 100,000 firms have 100 or more employees; a measly .4% of the total US firms. Most business literature on growth and leadership analyze the results of these larger firms. These are the companies whose names are our common household names; Walmart, Target, Ford, Microsoft, Google, Starbucks, McDonalds and others.
In the graph below you can see evidence of an INVISIBLE CEILING made up of natural barriers to Scaling a firm.
The E-Conundrum shows that the earlier a founder moves from Entrepreneurship to Enterprise, the easier it is to reach Significant Scalable Success!
The very attributes that help lead the Entrepreneur to Survival, are the very ones that prevent their Success! These are Forbes Magazine Entrepreneurs’ personality traits in action;
- Strong Sense of Self,
- Flexibility and
The fact is business is getting harder and more complex and todays superhuman workload will be the bare minimum in a few years—JUST TO SURVIVE!
As a Company has some success and begins to grow, employees are added, complexity skyrockets, new issues surface, new competitors emerge, more time is required, and the bottom line suffers.
These “put your head down and pay attention to every detail and jump on each issue coming in the front door” character traits are exactly the opposite of the Leadership traits needed to SCALE an Enterprise!
When you add up the reasons for Failure, research shows that an AMAZING 99% are attributed to some form on lack of Know-how and Experience, not the above attributes Forbes attributes to Entrepreneurs.
This paradox is why I wrote the E Conundrum Whitepaper (click to get it!) There is an answer and that is a changed paradigm or mindset, that of an Enterpriser which is much different that and Entrepreneur!