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By Michael Angier




Web SuccessNet

Staying Power: Building an Organization that Lasts

"Hang in there", "Stay the course", "Persevere", "Keep on keeping on", "Slow and steady wins the race".

These clichés abound because they're true. Even Woody Allen said, "Ninety percent of success is showing up".

There's a lot to be said for longevity. The stability that comes from having been around awhile adds credibility and security. You have the advantage of your experience as well as the notoriety that comes from being known in the marketplace.

My company (Success Networks) has been in business for over seven years. In Internet years, that's a VERY LONG time. Is it a market advantage? You bet. Is it enough? No, it's not. But customers do have more confidence dealing with a company that's been in business a while than they do with a startup. Most people figure a company that's endured must be doing at least SOME things right.

If you're in business for the long haul, you make better decisions. When you think long-term, you're not as tempted to take shortcuts because they rarely pay off in the end.

The longer you're in business, the more relationships you can develop and more opportunities will come your way.

A good objective for a world-class business is to create a company that can endure at least 100 years. Stability is one of the ten pillars of a world-class organization and is actually one of the many byproducts of the strategies and principles of the other nine pillars.

Note: to get your copy of the Ten Pillars, send a blank email to

You can't do anything about how long you've BEEN in business, but you can do something about how long you're going to BE in business.

Running an organization has never been easy. And with the complexities of a rapidly changing marketplace, new technologies, world markets and changing cultures, the challenges have never been greater.

It is incumbent upon us as business managers and leaders to keep things going—to build stability. Companies making rapid progress may get the headlines, but they are the exception rather than the norm. Far more companies succeed by daily taking care of the fundamentals, serving customers well and answering the phone on a regular basis.

It's not particularly dramatic, but it works. What may look like spectacular success is usually the result of less-than-spectacular hard work and preparation. Successful companies have been consistent at enough things to earn profits, increase sales and keep the doors open.

It's critical we take care of ourselves and take care of our organization so we can be around long enough to benefit from all our hard work. If we don't, we do a disservice to ourselves, our customers, our employees and our stakeholders.

Questions: How am I building the stability and staying power of my company? In what ways can we increase our security and enhance our chance for longevity?


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Last Updated 02/24/2006