Jana Matthews Group Finds CEOs Cautiously Optimistic About U.S. Economy

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CEOs of entrepreneurial companies remain optimistic about the economy and have identified keys to business growth from which every CEO can benefit. Those keys have been highlighted in a recent survey conducted by The Jana Matthews Group.

A survey of CEOs of entrepreneurial companies is good news for economic forecasters. While only 7% of the CEOs claim to be “very optimistic” about the U.S. economy for the remainder of 2011, 69% say they are “cautiously optimistic.”

However, these CEOs are even more bullish regarding the economic outlook for their own companies with 27% “very optimistic” and 63% “cautiously optimistic”. That optimism is reflected in the fact that over one-third of those surveyed say they are on track to grow 20% over last year and one-fourth say they expect 100% growth by the end of this year.

“But even more interesting is what they are doing to achieve this growth.” said Jana Matthews, CEO of The Jana Matthews Group that conducted the survey.

The top five changes the company leaders say they are making to accelerate growth include developing a new business strategy (55%); creating new products or services (52%); changing their go-to-market strategy (45%); hiring new people (45%) and reorganizing the company to get the right people in the right jobs (38%).

Matthews continued, “Maintaining an accurate assessment of the market is critical to the success of any business. But if they want to keep growing, companies need to be nimble, make changes to their products and services and changes to how they operate. The ability to do ‘reflexive optimizing’, as one CEO described it, is one of the secrets to business growth.”

Making changes to the enterprise often requires making personal changes as well. When CEOs were asked what they are doing personally to help their companies grow, 6 out of 10 said they are consciously delegating some of their responsibilities to other people; half have tapped outside resources, (engaged a consultant to help develop and execute a growth strategy or worked with a coach to become better leaders); and half said they are spending more time with customers to learn how to better meet their needs.

Having worked with entrepreneurial CEOs of growth companies all over the world, Matthews says that “Because their focus is on growth, small and medium companies - even major corporations – can learn from them, and government policy makers need to be tracking what high-growth CEOs are doing to facilitate growth because these are the companies that create most of the net new jobs in our economy. The economic recovery is not happening as quickly as we want, but if more companies were to emulate what these CEOs are doing, it could happen a lot faster.”

Dr. Jana Matthews is one of the world’s leading experts on entrepreneurial business growth and has been named one of 18 Women Business Gurus in the world. She is a Global Thought Leader for major corporations, has wrriten three leading books on business growth, served as a member of the original team at the Kauffman Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership and is the founder of four entrepreneurial companies of her own, including The Jana Matthews Group that provides consulting services and programs to help CEOs, entrepreneurs and executive teams become better leaders, improve the effectiveness of their organizations and achieve sustained profitable growth. More information is available at http://www.janamatthewsgroup.com.


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