“Deep roots are not reached by frost.” – JRR Tolkien, Lord of the Rings

Leaders involved in growth companies talk a lot about growing bigger. But as they focus on bigger, they forget to be stronger. And, as a result, the company gets weaker the larger it gets.

As I walked with a CEO preparing for a planning session, we passed a spectacular tree that appeared to have a root system as wide as its 150’ to 200’ branches. Beside it was a spindly tree.

As we walked by, the CEO compared his company to the little spindly tree – which could easily have been blown over if a tornado hit – and said that’s exactly what they were when starting out. But the banyan tree, with a root system that was so massive and strong, was ready for anything.

It’s a great metaphor.

As your company grows its revenue, you are vulnerable if your internal system and the clarity around strategy don’t get stronger too.

People are so busy growing bigger they don’t ask what they can do to be stronger.