September 12, 2012

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CEO of the Year

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ACG Utah Kicks Off Breakfast Series

Sarah Cutler

September 12, 2012

The Association of Corporate Growth (ACG) began its breakfast series for the 2012-2013 year with an inspiring presentation from business author and strategist Leo Hopf Tuesday morning.

The theme for the year is “Xtreme Business: Jumping the S Curve.” Mark Lehman, shareholder at Parson Behle & Latimer, explained the theme is key to continuing Utah’s recent trend of growth.

“One of the things that you’ve seen throughout Utah in the last several years is how well our businesses have done by taking advantage of opportunities, continuing to grow, generating revenue, generating jobs,” Lehman said. “We do much better here in Utah than in much of the rest of the country.”

Utah has seen better business growth than other states during the past few years, which created the opportunity for more companies to grow beyond doing good or great. ACG’s breakfast series is intended to help those companies “jump the S curve” to attain extreme business success.

Hopf related 12 strategies (in four groups) to boosting business from his book Rethink, Reinvent, Reposition: 12 Strategies to Renew Your Business and Boost Your Bottom Line:

  1. New Concept – Catch the New Wave; Put Old Wine in New Bottles; Revise Your Profit Model
  2. Extension – Aim Higher or Lower; Make a Time Shift; Get a Personality Transplant
  3. Solutions – Build Share of Wallet; Shift to the Sweet Spot; Leverage Your Core Competencies
  4. Transformation – Declare Victory and Move On; Keep the Knowledge, Switch the Business; Cash Out and Double Down

A business does not stay stagnant; it either grows or begins to decline, Hopf said. He noted the grocery store Trader Joe’s as an example of renewing a business model.

Trader Joe’s began as Pronto Markets, a convenient store, and was a competitor to 7-Eleven. It couldn’t grow as fast as 7-Eleven so it changed and moved it the “sweet spot.” It renewed, rebranded and became Trader Joe’s using private label products to obtain high profit margins in the grocery industry.

“Fundamentally, when it comes down to it, what is the renewal choice? It’s this: ‘I can either attempt renewal or not. If I don’t, I’m going to drag out the pain.’ Once a business needs renewal it almost never comes back,” Hopf said. “If you attempt renewal you might succeed or fail. If you succeed, now you’ve got a valuable part of your portfolio, something that’s got a true value proposition and real value and went from something that was a problem causer to something that’s great.”

Business owners need a plan to avoid pitfalls and a process to overcome them if they do hit. The new ACG season is available to help and support businesses through this process and move on to becoming an “Xtreme Business.”

For more information visit

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