There are lots of things that brand names can do to foster steady growth; however, there’s always a tendency to look outward when growth slows. A failing market, industry scandal, brutal competition, and a faltering economy are just a few examples of commonly blamed environmental reasons.

But why is the competition succeeding if all these external challenges are to blame?

What if the reason for slow growth has nothing to do with what’s going on outside, and everything to do with what’s going on inside? For most brand names, the time will come when a bit of introspection is necessary to pinpoint internal problems—to put growth back on-track.

When are Brand Names their own Worst Enemies?

Let’s be clear: This is not a blame game or an exercise in pointing fingers. It’s a reliable method for identifying and repairing the problems that are holding brand names back from significant growth.

We all tend to get caught up in our routines—in doing things the way they used to be done. And when brand names fail to evolve, they will be left behind.

Don’t want to be left behind? Then join the brand names that regularly complete the following checklist, to ensure that they’re doing everything they can do to foster (and not impede) brand growth.

  • Ask for and utilise feedback. Brand names that thrive ask for reviews, testimonials, feedback…and they listen and use what they learn to improve and grow their brands.
  • Give permission to be wrong. This applies to both you and your people. When you foster a brand environment where mistakes are accepted (and then corrected and used for learning), you and your people will be more creative, free-thinking, and will GROW. Your people will feel free to come to you with new ideas—ideas that could be the next big things for your brand.
  • Abandon the need to be right. When your team is fully on-board with your brand culture, they know it and love it as much as you do. This means that they will have ideas that are as good as (or better than) your own.
  • Support process evolution. What worked five years ago may not work today—even if it was at the core of your brand’s past success. It can be easy to fall into allegiance to a process, rather than your brand. Get to back to focussing on your brand and then adjust processes to support its growth.
  • Be decisive. When you have a strong brand strategy that supports your brand across all media and establishes a bullet-proof plan for a variety of situations, you can feel confident in jumping on new opportunities. Likewise, when your corporate values are named honestly, and when they align closely with everything your brand does, decisions will be quicker and simpler. Brand names that wait for 100% certainty to take opportunities often miss the boat—and lose revenue in the meantime.
  • Face stressors. Some brand owners lash out at their people, turn to micromanagement, or withdraw when they are stressed. Avoid this by facing your brand’s stressors head-on, having conversations that may be uncomfortable, and turning to your people for support. Avoiding unpleasant situations will lead to unwholesome cultures in all brand names.


There are lots more items that could be added to this checklist, but this is a good start for brand names hoping to avoid the most common internal problems that inhibit growth.

What are your concerns surrounding brand growth? Ask me live on Twitter with #BrandBrainsQandA and then get your daily branding tips by subscribing to our YouTube channel.

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