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Michael Bush to CEOs: Set Your Revenue Growth Goals Higher

Michael Bush wants your company to aim higher.

According to Bush, the chief executive officer at New York-based Great Place to Work, many businesses set revenue growth goals of 10% to 15% each year. These numbers, he says, are too low.

At the i4cp 2018 Conference: Next Practices Now (to be held March 26 – 29 at the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess in Scottsdale, AZ), Bush will offer insight into how to drive increased business growth, and the role HR leaders can play in helping the organization reach these greater heights. 

Creating a High-Performance Culture

Traditionally, many companies project and plan growth based on current conditions, says Bush.

“A lot of CEOs do what they know, in terms of strategic planning, allocating resources and so on. Therefore, they’re happy with 10% to 15% growth year over year.”

A CEO and his or her leadership team could help their organization sail right past such projections, however, by creating a culture designed to increase business performance. Indeed, companies ranking in the top quartile of executive effectiveness achieve three times the median year-over-year growth of those in the lowest quartile, as measured by Great Place to Work’s Trust Index.

The organization’s top HR person must help lead the way, says Bush, who points to the Top 100 Best Companies to Work For list, which Fortune and Great Place to Work produce annually, to illustrate his point.

“If you take our Top 100 list and look at the top 25 versus the lowest 25—and they’re all great companies—the ones in the highest quartile experience three times the growth of those in the lowest quartile,” he says. “And if you look at the relationship between the CHRO and the CEO at those in the highest quartile, they’re a powerful pair. The CHRO in those companies is more than a thought leader.”

Bush likens these CHROs to maestros, helping the CEO determine when to push the organization’s talent and when to hold back, for example.

“Top CHROs have this ability, and you can see it. That’s what I’ve experienced in running businesses and being around HR people who are very skilled at this.”

Developing Leaders for All

The aforementioned CHROs exemplify what Bush and Great Place to Work classify as For All Leaders.

“For All Leaders can lead not just engineers, not just men, not just women, and not just millennials,” he says. “Being able to lead all employees is the way to get innovation from all.”

At the upcoming i4cp conference, Bush will outline the traits For All Leaders possess, and the practice areas that will help leaders in your organization progress through the five levels of leadership as defined by Great Place to Work.

On the lowest rung, for example, are the unintentional leaders. These are strong individual performers who become people leaders, but don’t connect with most of the individuals they manage, explains Bush. The For All Leader occupies the top level and creates a consistently great experience with most of the individual members of their teams, he says.

“The HR/leadership development prescription for helping leaders improve the level of experience that employees are having is to improve leaders’ ability to listen, speak, develop, celebrate, welcome new hires, inspire, thank, care and share the community impact that the business makes,” says Bush. “These are our nine practice areas that we measure to improve the level of trust that all employees have in their leaders.”