business growth Archives - CFO Centre Australia

Plan For Profitable Growth in 7 Easy Steps

Plan For Profitable Growth in 7 Easy Steps

Planning for growth is something every business owner will say they do. However, not all business owners will do this effectively and with a focus that will generate profitable growth.

Many businesses plan for growth, but not profitable growth.  Some businesses focus on growing sales without a focus on margins while others build infrastructures to support sales and growth that never materialize.

Michael Porter said, “If your goal is anything but profitability – if it’s to be big, or to grow fast, or to become a technology leader – you’ll hit problems.

A business must focus on profitable, scalable and sustainable activities if it is to grow. Profit and the generation of cash to re-invest in your business must be made a priority. It’s an essential part of the financial strategy and structure of a successful business.  Profit and a clear business plan will create a focus and the alignment of the organization. Additionally, it’ll attract investors and other sources of funds to fuel growth – all of which impacts the underlying business value of the business.

CFO Centre has identified:

7 Keys to Profitable Growth:

  1. Define your business goals & objectives
    Produce a formal plan from which you can articulate a vision
  2. Critically review your business
    Identify competitive advantage, scalability & sustainability
  3. Establish a financial plan
    Identify milestones, KPIs & dashboards
  4. Create organisational alignment
    Nurture your culture, hire the right people and communicate the vision
  5. Identify the financial resources required
  6. Support the business with systems & processes to optimize performance
  7. Measure, review, evaluate & course correct
    Be proactive & prepared to be reactive

If you follow these 7 Keys and plan for profitable growth, you will ultimately:

  1. Improve and grow profits
  2. Maximise the scalability of your business
  3. Enhance management team and organizational structure
  4. Attract investors and other sources of funds
  5. Increase business value

To enhance the value of your business and grow successfully, follow the 7 Keys and Plan for Profitable Growth.

17 Reasons Why You Need a CFO To Help You Exit

17 Reasons Why You Need a CFO To Help You Exit

The CFO Centre will provide you with a highly experienced senior CFO (Chief Financial Officer) with ‘big business experience’ for a fraction of the cost of a full-time CFO.

This means you will have:

  • One of Australia’s leading CFOs, working with you on a part-time basis
  • A local support team of CFOs, plus
  • A national and international collaborative team of over 750 CFOs sharing best practice (the power of hundreds)
  • Access to our national and international network of clients and partners

With all that support and expertise at your fingertips, you will achieve better results, faster. It means you’ll have more confidence and clarity when it comes to decision-making. After all, you’ll have access to expert help and advice whenever you need it.

In particular, your part-time CFO will help you to ensure that your business has planned and prepared for an exit. The sale process would be managed efficiently to minimise challenges on price, and prevent advisors’ fees from absorbing too much of the sale price.

For example, your CFO will:

  1. Help you to implement your strategy for growth and exit
  2. Identify where value can be maximised and eliminate unprofitable or low profit activities
  3. Ensure that shareholders’ interests are protected through a shareholders’ agreement
  4. Explain what incentive arrangements are available for key management and introduce them. These could include bonus plans aligned to the business objectives or option plans
  5. Ensure that property is held in the most appropriate manner for the business and any potential acquirer, freehold or leasehold, length of tenancy
  6. Review pension arrangements to identify any funding or future liability issues
  7. Review contracts and trading terms to ensure they are in place, up to date and enforced
  8. Identify risks to the business from suppliers and customers on whom the business may have become reliant and plan to spread the risk
  9. Improve the accuracy and timeliness of management information
  10. Introduce systems and controls to increase confidence in the integrity of the accounting information
  11. Improve and/or introduce forecasting processes and procedures so that budgets and forecasts can be used as dynamic planning tools
  12. Identify means of improving margins and reducing overheads to improve profitability
  13. Ensure compliance with PAYG, Superannuation, GST, Income Tax and Company Tax legislation while seeking ways to reduce the overall tax burden to you and your business
  14. Introduce you to corporate finance, legal and other advisers to help with all aspects of the exit preparation and process
  15. Project manage the exit process internally so that it minimises the disruption to other staff and their continuing responsibilities
  16. Create confidence in the acquirer and their advisers so that they have limited opportunity to attempt to negotiate the price down or increase warranties from you
  17. Help you achieve the freedom you want after the efforts that you have invested in growing business

How much better would you feel when you engage a top calibre CFO to work with you on your exit/succession?  Get in touch with us today – 1300 447 740

 

Photo by fauxels

Where Will Your Business Be in 1 Year From Now?

Where Will Your Business Be in 1 Year From Now?

If you want your business to achieve high ambitious turnover growth of at least 20% year on year, you need a business scaling strategy that incorporates a strong vision and a solid business plan.

Helping your small business to grow, to achieve a sustained growth, will involve careful planning and most likely involve taking calculated risks.

You need to think about what you want to achieve. Where do you want to be 1 year from now?  You won’t find that easy unless you know your target market and your customers thoroughly, have products and services they’re keen to buy and be aware of the expenses you’re likely to face.

Managing Growth

To manage your company’s growth, it’s critical that you refer often to your business plan and keep an eye on the business’ key metrics, benchmarks and timelines.

You need to make sure that people have actionable activities; things that they can do and which can be measured.

As well as having repeatable processes and measuring your progress on a day-to-day basis, it’s crucial to be able and willing to adapt and be flexible if things change.

Knowing all your Numbers

Besides monitoring KPIs for turnover, gross profit percentage and salaries, it’s also important to establish KPIs for your profit per product and customer profitability.

You need to know whether you’re doing more business with each of your customers than you were doing the previous year, for example. That’s more important than focusing on going out and winning new customers.

Equally important is being aware of your balance sheet.

Other important KPIs are those that relate to your customer conversion rates, your sales profitability, and your working capital

Funding Growth

You also need to have a clear understanding of what’s achievable both in the short and long-term.

At some point, you’re likely to need to invest in the company to achieve the revenue growth and scale your business the way you want.

That might be to cover the cost of hiring of more team members, the training of your existing employees and their retention, or the development of new product lines or services to boost sales.

Like some companies, you might need additional funding to be able to hire in external experts such as the CFO Centre’s part-time CFOs to fill the personnel gaps within the company as it scales up.

You will also have to decide how you will fund the additional resources you need to sustain your growth.

Companies that enjoy strong growth are prepared to employ the right people and to raise the money they need.  Sometimes they have even personally guaranteed the loans they’ve taken out on the company’s behalf.

They’re taking well planned, well considered risks.

The more risk-averse often shy away from offering personal guarantees on loans or embarking on mergers and acquisitions that would help to fuel their rapid growth.

Invariably however you do need to borrow money to achieve growth.

Merger/Acquisition Growth

One of the fastest ways to scale your business is to merge with or acquire another business in your market. Or, in the case of retail or hotel/restaurant companies, open new branches in different locations. It could also involve forming a joint venture partnership.

You need to ensure there are alignment and support for the from all the company’s stakeholders. Including customers, senior management, non-executive directors, potential joint venture or merger partners. And your banks and other finance institutions, your accountants, and your immediate team.

The benefits of choosing the right target company for your merger or acquisition can mean your market share and assets increase.

Your new staff may have more expertise and skills than your existing employees.

The merger or acquisition may make it easier to obtain capital if or when you need it.

But this kind of inorganic growth can be problematic. The purchase price for the acquisition can be prohibitive while restructuring charges can increase expenses.  It takes time to benefit from the knowledge or technology your company has acquired through the merger or acquisition.

You may find you need to recruit more managers to cope with the increased workforce.

The business may move in a direction you never anticipated. Or the new company may grow too quickly which puts it at greater risk.

Often, the combination of organic and inorganic growth gives you the best outcome. Your company can diversify its revenue base without having to rely purely on current operations to grow your market share.

Three tips to scale your business

  1. Be open minded about taking on investment. Scaling your business will be hard work and you need to find a way to do it without running out of cash.
  2. Conduct market research to ensure people want to buy what you’re offering. It’s got to interest and excite them so much they’re willing to hand over cash for it.
  3. Reward your employees and make sure they understand and are engaged with your vision for the business. You’ve got to bring them on the journey.

Contact us now if you want to learn how a part-time CFO (Chief Financial Officer) can help you to implement the best business growth strategy.

How to Outsmart Your Competitors with a Business Plan

How to Outsmart Your Competitors with a Business Plan

Most business owners know that without a comprehensive, up-to-date business plan and an implementation timetable, they may be missing out on opportunities for growth and not realising their full potential.  However, around 30% of SMEs don’t have one. To ensure you’re ahead of your competitors, it’s imperative to find the time and/or resources to create and implement a plan for the start of the new financial year.

A formal plan can be an extremely valuable tool for managing and growing a business. It allows a company to recognize its strengths and weaknesses. Furthermore, research has shown that SMEs that have a business plan in place are consistently more profitable than those who don’t.

A Formal Plan

Planning is the key to the success of any business, no matter its size or age.  Yet many SMEs don’t have a plan. The majority of those without such a plan say they don’t believe it’s necessary or that they keep their plans in their head.

It’s concerning that so many small and medium-sized businesses don’t have a formal business plan. Without clear direction, they may be missing out on opportunities for growth and not realizing their full potential.  A plan is invaluable and should see out the company’s:

  1. Strategic direction
  2. Main operating and financial targets;
  3. Actions it will take to achieve those targets,
  4. New initiatives and investments planned;
  5. And their impact on the company’s performance

Creation and Implementation

Creating a well thought-through, comprehensive business plan is an arduous task. Thinking through objectives and likely outcomes which may occur many years down the line is challenging. But it is the hard work up front which makes for lighter work down the road as all of our team of part-time CFOs will attest to.

Most CEOs and business owners simply don’t have the time to spend on quality strategic thinking or to document and communicate that thinking in a way which allows the whole business to buy into the vision.

Harder still is managing and implementing the business plan. Significant strategic course corrections are commonplace in fast-growing companies. These should be embraced. The tricky part though is in managing regular change. That requires a combination of time and specialist knowledge.

There is an art and science to effective business planning and getting it right brings a real sense of clarity and direction to business – this is where an experienced part-time CFO can make a significant contribution.

Not spending quality time on strategic planning usually leads to a chaotic working environment. Our clients often talk about ‘not feeling in control’ and ‘not really knowing what is coming around the next corner’.

Proper business planning is very liberating for the business owner, whatever their objective might be. A well-constructed and regularly reviewed business plan will instil real confidence that the goal is indeed achievable.

Key Benefits

Writing a business plan has many benefits for businesses of any size and in any industry. It can help owners and senior managers to:

  1. Clarify objectives and develop suitable strategies.
  2. Understand the market.
  3. Identify and overcome internal and external threats
  4. Organise the company
  5. Access external funding

Key Elements

The most important part of your business plan is its financial information. Your financial forecasts should include your cash flow predictions for the next 12 months or more. You’ll also need to include sales estimates and costs to ensure the business has enough working capital or to ensure you understand any needs to arrange additional financing.

You need to explain all assumptions in the business plan, with best and worst case scenarios. Detail the risks you’re likely to face and how they will be dealt with.

Conclusion

  • An up-to-date business plan or ‘roadmap’ in your business will allow you to experience a sense of control, which may have been absent since the day you started your company.
  • The business plan will remove a significant amount of confusion from your operating procedures. There will always be challenges contained within new projects but you will have a proper framework against which all decision-making can take place.
  • The plan provides the blueprint for delegating responsibility to your team and allows you to create some space in your own environment to work on growing your business.
  • You will move out of the chaos and into a more serene working environment where each of the gears, which make up the bigger system, is able to move in harmony.
  • Potential hazards will have been identified in advance and dealt with before they become unmanageable. You will be able to move from a culture of fire-fighting to a culture of fire-prevention and the benefits will be felt by each member of your team and most probably by your customers too.
  • A part-time CFO can assist with creating, implementing and reviewing your Business Plan, as well as be a constant guide and sounding board for you.

The business plan is the first key to profitable growth!

Photo by fauxels: https://www.pexels.com/photo/photo-of-people-doing-handshakes-3183197/

Hazards To Growth

Hazards To Growth

There can be a low-level panic that suffuses an organisation. A constant pressure to keep moving faster and faster and faster.  It’s no secret that companies can grow too fast, stretching both culture and controls.

Imagine this: a multi-million-dollar company with almost 200 employees. The founder likes to micromanage to the point he (not the HR department) has sole approval over employee benefits such as requests for time off for holidays.

The company doesn’t have a dedicated IT employee or team. That’s because that same founder believes its gifted employees should be able to resolve any IT problems that occur! No matter if doing so pulls them away from developing products or resolving customer problems.

It might sound far-fetched, but these are just a few of the problems companies can face during an accelerated growth or scale-up stage.

Challenges of Scaling Up

While your scaling up might not experience the internal and external challenges above, you are likely to face at least one or two challenges. It might be:

  • People challenges
  • Sales and marketing challenges
  • Operational challenges
  • Administrative challenges
  • Financial challenges.

As the CFO Centre’s founder Colin Mills said in his book, ‘Scale Up: How to Take Your Business To The Next Level Without Losing Control and Running out of Cash’, the scale-up stage is when businesses really struggle because they’re growing but don’t have the infrastructure to support their expanded operations.

They might have the necessary revenue, manufacturing base, or customer reach of a substantial business. However, their controls, processes, personnel, leadership and culture are often still that of the much smaller business they were a short time before, he said.

Worse, they often don’t have the resources to create and maintain such an infrastructure.

During the scale-up stage, they face running out of cash or simply getting stuck, he said.

Revising your business model

It’s only possible to avoid such problems by revising your entire business model. If you don’t, then all the small problems that niggle at you now are likely to become major issues once you begin scaling up.

Even if your business is already going through the scaling up stage, it’s still possible to retrofit, design, and redesign it, he said.

Don’t get lost in the complexity

“In many ways, like most things in life, scaling up is not rocket science. No genius is required, said Mills. It can often be about common sense. “But common sense isn’t always common practice, and being able to focus on the most important things as you scale up is a skill that can get lost in the complexity of the whole process.”

One solution

The easiest way to focus on what’s important during the scaling up stage is to have expert help with big business experience.

For a fraction of the cost of a full-time CFO, the CFO Centre will provide you with a highly experienced senior CFO. They will work with you on a part-time basis to help you with scaling up your business. To discover how the CFO Centre will help your company to scale up, please contact us here.

Do You Have The Capabilities And Capacity For Growth?

Do You Have The Capabilities And Capacity For Growth?

Scaling your business

Scaling your business depends on two factors: your company’s capability and its capacity to deal with growth.

To scale up your business, your company must be capable of dealing with a growing amount of work or sales and of doing it cost-effectively.

You need to know that your company can achieve exponential growth without costs rising uncontrollably as a result. It’s vital too, that performance doesn’t suffer as your company scales up.

You also need to be sure that your business systems, employees, and infrastructure can accommodate growth. For instance, if you get a sudden surge in orders, will your company be able to cope? Will you be still able to manufacture and deliver products or services on time? Do you have enough employees to deal with a surge in work or sales?

Scaling a business requires careful planning and some funding. To be successful, you’ll need to have the right systems, processes, technology, staff, finance, and even partners in place.

1. Identify process gaps

Audit your business processes (core processes, support processes, and management processes) to find their strengths and weaknesses. Find the process gaps and address them before you start to scale up.

Keep the processes simple and straightforward. Complex processes slow things down and hinder progress.

2. Boost sales

Decide what your company needs to do to increase sales. How many new customers will you need to meet your scaled-up goals?

Create a sales growth forecast that details the number of new clients you need, the orders, and the revenue you want to generate.

Examine your existing sales structure and decide if it can generate more sales. Can you increase your flow of leads? Do you need to offer different products or services? Is there an untapped market? Do you have a marketing system to track and manage leads? Is your sales team capable of following up and closing more leads?

Make sure you have enough staff to cope with an increase in sales. If you don’t have enough staff, consider hiring new employees, outsourcing tasks, or finding partners that may be able to handle functions more efficiently than your company.

3. Forecast costs

Once you’ve done the sales growth forecast, create an expense forecast that includes the new technology, employees, infrastructure and systems you’ll need to be able to handle the new sales orders. The more detailed your cost estimates, the more realistic your plan will be.

4. Get funding

If you need to hire more staff, install new technology, add facilities or equipment, and create new reporting systems, you’ll need funds. Consider how you will fund the company’s growth.

5. Make delighting customers a priority

To reach your sales forecasts, your company will need loyal customers. You’ll win their loyalty by delivering outstanding products or services and customer service every time you interact with them.

6. Invest in technology

Invest in technology that will automate tasks. Automation will bring costs down and make production more efficient.

Ensure that your systems are integrated and work smoothly together.

7. Ask for help

Don’t be afraid to ask for help from experts who have experience in scaling up companies.  In an interview, Apple’s co-founder, Steve Jobs, said, “I’ve never found anybody who didn’t want to help me when I’ve asked them for help. – I just asked.”

6 Keys to Successful Company Growth

6 Keys to Successful Company Growth

If you want to grow your business successfully, then you need to get the basics right. In this article, we’ll delve into our top six tips on how to grow a company successfully.

1. Clear Vision and effective communication

The most important thing that determines business success is the business owner’s thinking. Allowing yourself time to think, dream and get a clear vision is essential to business growth.  Without a clear vision and effectively communicating it, how will you and your employees know where they are going? If the business owner has a clear vision, and shares it with all stakeholders, it’s highly likely that the business will also go in the same direction.

2. Set your goals and develop growth strategies

Your goals for your business will provide an overall framework for everyone to follow. The strategies you’ll use to achieve those goals should serve as a roadmap. It will help you to build a structure and bring a focus to decision making.

Once you’ve translated your goals into strategies, you can develop systems and processes that will help with the smooth running of the business.

Many businesses fail in the execution of their strategy. Don’t be afraid. It’s better to execute a mediocre plan correctly than it is to execute a perfect plan poorly.

3. Employ or outsource top-performing talent

A successful business depends on its people. That is hard-working, determined people whose goals are aligned with the organisation’s goals.

The more your organisation is seen to trust employees with responsibility and to invest in their career development, the more likely it is to attract and retain top performers.

But rather than rush to hire people as you scale up, consider outsourcing tasks and using freelancers or temps. This could save you from hiring the wrong people and facing costly turnover.

Sir Richard Branson, Founder of the Virgin Group, says, “There is little point recruiting great people if you don’t then give them the autonomy to take their role and run with it.  It also frees you up as the founder to focus less on the day-to-day activities and more on the over-arching objectives laid out in your roadmap.”

4. Attracting and retaining customers

To build your business, you also need to develop a system to attract and retain high-quality customers.  For that to happen, you must understand your customers’ needs and pain points. What burning needs do they have? What keeps them from falling asleep at night?

Your customers must believe that your products or services will meet their needs or overcome their challenges.

Many business owners make the mistake of focusing their entire sales and marketing efforts and budget on attracting new customers. They often overlook the needs of their existing customers.

Ignoring your existing customers is a huge mistake. People don’t like to feel as if businesses take them for granted once they’ve placed an order. If they feel neglected, they’re likely to move to another company.

It doesn’t matter if you run a small business or a large corporation. Your company must deliver an exceptional customer service experience.

5. Know the Hazards

Rapid growth might be desirable, but your company must be able to cope with its effects. For instance, can your company meet a sudden influx of orders? What impact would that have on your cash flow?  There are dangers of scaling up too fast. They include:

  •         Hiring the wrong people
  •         Losing track of your finances
  •         Management mistakes
  •         Not maintaining customer service
  •         Ineffective business operations
  •         Technology problems
  •         Cash flow mistakes

6. Stay Focussed

The easiest way to stay focused on what’s important during the scaling up stage is to have expert help from a part-time CFO who has big business experience.

For a fraction of the cost of a full-time CFO, the CFO Centre can provide you with a highly experienced CFO who will work with you on a part-time basis to help you with scaling up your business.

Get in contact with us today so we can book in a consultation meeting with one of our dedicated Regional Directors.

“Most people never pick up the phone and call; most people never ask. And that’s what separates, sometimes, the people that do things from the people that just dream about them.” – Steve Jobs, Apple’s Co-founder.

 

Photo by Basil James on Unsplash

What is the North Star?

What is the North Star?

In the 1950s, strategic planning was around budgetary planning and control, then we jumped to 1970s which focused on corporate planning; 1980s focussed on strategic positioning, 1990s strategic competitive advantage; 2000s strategic and organisational innovation; 2010 complexity and rapid change.

Now, we are talking about North Star Metrics (NSM). The term has been in around since the 2000s and was used primarily in Silicon Valley. It has taken a while to reach Perth.

Here is our view of what the North Star means for SMEs.

If you are not familiar with North Star, it is another form of goal setting. Remember SMART goals (specific; measurable; achievable; realistic; and time-based)? And what about vision boards, or stepping stone goals or even a more recent fad of bullet journaling?

A North Star goal, in its basic form, has also been referred to as the Big Hairy Audacious Goal. It is a goal so big, so far out there and it is not about the destination but more about the journey.

One article recommends to think of them “the way sailors view the North Star: A way to stay on course, no matter where you are. And if you don’t know where to go or what to do, all it takes is a quick glance to get back on track”.

If that is the basic form, let’s have a look at the metric in more detail.

Key steps for creating a North Star Metric

1. Start by Understanding How Customers Get Value

And not just any customers, but instead the “must have” customers who say they would be “very disappointed” if they could no longer use the product. Your goal is to expand this “must have value” across your existing and new customers. Your North Star Metric is how you quantify expansion of this value.

2. Should be Possible to Grow NSM “Up and to the Right” Over Time

A good rule of thumb is to choose a metric that can be “up and to the right” over a long period of time. This is why “Daily Active Users” is an example of a good NSM for consumer products like Facebook or online games.

3. Consider the Downsides of a Metric

Think through some scenarios where growing the metric could lead the team to behave in ways that are against the long-term interest of the business. For example, if you made your NSM “average monthly revenue per customer,” then the fastest way to grow this number would be to eliminate all customers that have a relatively low value — even if they are profitable customers. This would likely reduce your overall customer and revenue growth rate.

4. Keep it Simple

Remember that the point of the NSM is to align everyone on your team to work together to grow it. So, it’s important that it is simple enough for everyone to understand it and recall it.

5. Why Not Just Focus on Revenue Growth?

Revenue growth is very important, so this is a natural question that many people, especially business owners, ask. The challenge is that if revenue growth outpaces growth in the aggregate value that your product delivers to customers, it will not be sustainable. Revenue growth will eventually stall and start to decline. But if we can continue to grow aggregate value delivered to customers over time, then it becomes possible to sustainably grow revenue.

For example, let’s take the CFO Centre (CFOC).

How customers get value: CFOC provides highly experienced CFOs to SMEs on a part-time basis.

Grow NSM: the number of active clients

Downsides: CFOC needs to be able to service active clients and this is directly related to number of CFOs

Keep it simple: CFOC wants every SME to have access to a part-time CFO.

This is a big hairy audacious goal. We understand that the number of clients is limited by the number of CFOs but a North Star Metric isn’t necessarily pragmatic or utilitarian. It does, however, provide a direction for the SME and the business owner.

What is the North Star Framework?

In addition to the metric, the North Star Framework includes a set of key inputs that collectively act as factors that produce the metric. Product teams can directly influence these inputs with their day-to-day work.

This combination of metric and inputs serves three critical purposes in any company:

  1. It helps prioritise and accelerate informed, but decentralised, decision-making.
  2. It helps teams align and communicate.
  3. It enables teams to focus on impact and sustainable, product-led growth.

Personally, I would add to this:

Imagine you have your North Star Metric, next you define sub-metrics (break down big goal to smaller goals), define the outputs (key elements of success) of those goals, define how you will achieve those outputs (needs to be measurable) and finally, what are the inputs to reach the outputs.

The CFOC question

At the CFO Centre, we ask our clients: what do you want your business to do for you?

This is an important question as our goal is to build a relationship with a business owner and the questions starts our journey to better understand what is important to them.

The answer to this question can also be the basis of your North Star.

Is the North Star relevant to SMEs?

Overall, I like the concept of setting a North Star for a business but I much prefer the more basic approach: Big Hairy Audacious Goal.

I was in conversation with one business owner who had his North Star, or rather his Big Hairy Audacious Goal. He wants his business to be valued at $1bn by 2029. I thought this was brilliant and I think this is what North Stars are about.

Set your big goal but remember, it is more about the journey than the destination!

Final words

To qualify as a “North Star,” a metric must do three things: lead to revenue, reflect customer value, and measure progress.

Make it bold, tap into your dream and start the journey.

 

Sources:

Types of Goal Setting – From North Star Goals to SMART to Bullet Journals – Leanne Calderwood; The North Star Approach to Goal Setting | by Patrick Ewers | Better Humans; What is a North Star metric? | Mixpanel; About the North Star Framework – Amplitude; North Star Metric: What Is It and How To Find It For Your Company – Kissmetrics; How To Find Your Company’s North Star Metric (forbes.com); Finding the Right North Star Metric | by Sean Ellis | Growth Hackers; What is the North Star Metric? Theory, benefits and examples | toolshero; What is the North Star for your Strategic Planning? | Insigniam Quarterly; Strategic guardrails for digital transformation | Deloitte Insights