The Four Stages

four stages

Every organization, division, or program goes through four stages, in order:

  1. Conceive: find something compelling in out clients’ lives that needs fixing and commit to fixing it.
  2. Launch: figure out how to fix it for a few clients; keep trying it, learning, improving, and trying it again.
  3. Flow: find more clients who need the solution and offer it to them; get into a rhythm; add resources and systems to find more clients, manage the volume, and maintain service.
  4. Grow: find even more clients–often in related demographics and psychographics who have the same or similar problem to fix; trim or redeploy resources to maintain profit or stay within budget; keep improving how we fix the problem.

Ideally, our organizations go through the cycle over and over again–returning to Conceive from Grow–to adapt, innovate,  and remain meaningfully viable.

Of course, we can get stuck in any of the stages. Knowing which stage we are in and what stage comes next helps us figure out how to get unstuck.


In your corner,



Today’s photo credit: joiseyshowaa cc

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