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As the global economy continues to emerge from the slump brought on by the pandemic, business leaders are once again focused on building revenue. However, executives are also worried about the impact of inflation, changes in the labor market, and other macroeconomic factors that could affect their growth goals. Despite the continued uncertainty around the world, the number of hypergrowth companies continues to rise, and Toptal Insights asked leaders at some of the fastest-growing companies in the US about the principles that underlie their thriving businesses.
Here are some of the strategies used by hypergrowth companies to achieve success.
Employees Should Be Able to Choose Where and When They Do Their Jobs
Companies like UiPath, a hypergrowth automation software firm that ranks 18th on Inc.’s 2021 Best-Led Companies list, are thriving because they allow their employees to work where and when they want. Chief Marketing Officer Bobby Patrick believes that hyperflexibility is one reason the company has a low churn rate and has reported tremendous growth, going from $2.2 million in revenue in 2016 to more than $800 million in its latest fiscal year.
UiPath allows its employees to flexibly accommodate not only the work they do but also how their work fits into their life. This kind of work-life balance could look like an employee working fairly continuously for a week to finish a project, then just logging on for a couple of hours—or not at all—when things are slow or they have family or other obligations to attend to.
Dell Technologies, ranked 28th on the Fortune 500 list, has been a pioneer in workplace flexibility since 2009, offering many options to employees, including remote work, asynchronous work, and job-sharing. Patrick believes that happier, less-stressed employees are more productive, and offering flexibility gives employers an edge in the war for top talent. A global survey of 14,000 people shows that nearly 40% of knowledge workers said a flexible schedule was one of the top three things they considered when deciding whether to accept a job offer.
Personality, Skills, and Diversity Matter More Than Pedigree
VizyPay, a hypergrowth credit card payment processing company based in Iowa, has thrown out traditional requirements like four-year degrees and past sector experience as requirements for open job roles. CEO and Founder Austin Mac Nab believes that his company’s three-year growth rate of 7,383% and being ranked 45th on the latest Inc. 5000 list of the fastest-growing companies in the US is due to the company’s hiring approach.
When candidates come in for an interview, VizyPay is not looking at resumes. They hire for attitude and effort. They drill down into job candidates’ core values and personality traits. They want to know their story and get to know the person that they are about to stand shoulder to shoulder with.
This modus operandi has helped the company build an extremely diverse workforce. In 2021, VizyPay was named the top small company in Iowa for diversity, equity, and inclusion by Energage and the Des Moines Register. Mac Nab believes that having a wider range of viewpoints and experiences among the staff leads to more creative thinking and fresh ideas. Highly diverse companies are more profitable and more innovative than highly homogeneous organizations, according to studies.
Employees Will Drive Innovation If You Give Them a Voice—and Make It Safe to Speak Up
Employees’ creative new ideas and complaints can greatly benefit businesses. Researchers found that employees must feel psychologically safe at work in order to offer useful criticism to leadership. That’s why UiPath allows employees to share feedback anonymously, reducing the fear of blowback or retaliation.
Business leaders may want to get more comfortable with hearing
Empowering Employees to Make Decisions Can Drive Growth
At Fidelis Cybersecurity, a hypergrowth company that specializes in cyberattack detection and prevention, employees are encouraged to make decisions on their own—often with surprising results. “We want our people to be able to make decisions in their areas of responsibility without always going up the chain for approval,” says CEO Anup Ghosh. “That doesn’t mean we don’t have oversight, but we’re not a command-and-control company.”
The approach seems to be working: Fidelis Cybersecurity has a three-year growth rate of 2,028% and ranked 23rd on Deloitte’s 2021 Technology Fast 500 list of the fastest-growing tech companies in North America. And in 2020, the company was acquired by a larger player in the cybersecurity industry, adding to the valuation of the business.
Ghosh believes that empowering employees to make decisions is not only important to make the company more nimble, but it’s also a way to foster creativity and innovation. “We’re not in the business of providing solutions to problems that our customers aren’t even aware they have yet,” he says. “We have to be innovative and agile to meet our clients’ needs.” And that means being willing to take calculated risks.
It’s also worth noting that giving employees autonomy can help foster a more positive work culture. When employees feel empowered, they are more likely to be engaged and invested in their work. That can lead to higher levels of job satisfaction and lower turnover rates. And, as Fidelis Cybersecurity has shown, it can also be a recipe for hypergrowth.
A Focus on Customer Satisfaction
Is Key While there’s no one-size-fits-all formula for achieving hypergrowth, one thing is clear: a strong focus on customer satisfaction is essential. If your customers are happy, they’ll keep coming back—and they’ll be more likely to recommend your business to others.
This is something that all of the hypergrowth companies we spoke to emphasized. At VizyPay, for example, customer satisfaction is a top priority. “One of the things that we’re fanatical about is customer service,” says CEO Austin Mac Nab. “When we look at other companies in our space, we feel like we’re heads and shoulders above them in terms of the experience that our merchants have when they call us.”
Similarly, at Fidelis Cybersecurity, the focus on customer satisfaction has been a key driver of growth. “We’re focused on making sure that our customers are happy, that we’re delivering value to them, and that we’re addressing their pain points,” says Ghosh.
Ultimately, the key to achieving hypergrowth is to focus on what matters most: your customers. By putting their needs first, you’ll be better positioned to build a business that can not only survive but thrive in an ever-changing economic landscape.
Hypergrowth is a rare feat that requires a combination of factors to come together: a great product or service, a strong focus on customer satisfaction, a willingness to take calculated risks, and an empowered and engaged workforce. By following the examples set by some of the fastest-growing companies in the US, businesses of all sizes can learn to thrive in an uncertain economy. Whether it’s embracing workplace flexibility, valuing empathy, empowering employees, or focusing on customer satisfaction, there are many paths to hypergrowth. The key is to find the ones that work best for your business and to stay focused on the things that matter most.