The Growth Imperative

For many companies "Growth" is a primary corporate objective. The parameters by which growth is measured may vary (shareholder value, earnings per share, profits, and sales are all popular), but the aspiration to grow rapidly is widespread. Yet the pursuit of growth, especially in mature markets, can be dangerous, leading to over ambitious investments that fail to pay back and reckless acquisitions that destroy value. The growth imperative all too often drives successful companies too hard, sowing the seeds of their ultimate downfall. We need a clearer understanding of growth as an objective in order to strike a better balance between its attractions and its risks.

Goold M. (1999) The Growth Imperative, Long Range Planning, Vol. 32, No. 1 pp. 127-129