Stages of Firm’s Development and the Golden Eagle Strategy

One of the major aims of the golden eagle strategy is to create a roadmap for companies to have a successful and sustainable business. Each company faces different challenges during their road trip and they have different stages to pass. The golden eagle strategy is applicable to all stages of the firm development.

Seed

Seed is the first step of starting a company. In this stage, the entrepreneur creates the idea and continues by planning. This stage is where the entrepreneur explores the opportunity and generates the idea and business concept. In the seed stage the entrepreneur needs to create the business plan, business model and come up with in-depth information about the key resources, key success factors, key people, key technology, etc. One of the biggest aims of the entrepreneurs at this stage is to deduce the uncertainty as much as possible.

The golden eagle entrepreneur uses a panoramic view during the seed stage to scan the market and gather all essential information, while having a prey focus approach to create value for customers. The golden eagle entrepreneur explores all possible opportunities in seed stage and plans for a future vast home range in order to decrease uncertainty and manage possible future crisis.

In the seed stage there is not any registered company and it is just the idea that pushes the entrepreneur to keep going. Therefore, it is of the essence to deduce the uncertainty as much as possible. The golden eagle framework provides a comprehensive guide for the entrepreneurs at this stage. The uncertainty should be decreased via panoramic view and the information which is gathered at this stage.

The outlook from the top of the skies is required to scan the market and recognize opportunities. The prey focus is also what the golden eagle entrepreneur takes into consideration at this stage by focusing on the target audience and potential customer. The product or service should either solve a current problem or create value for customers. It can also be through a disruptive innovation or a blue ocean strategy when the product or service creates new demand on the market. Furthermore, the opportunity recognition during the seed stage is critical for the entrepreneur. Recognizing the real opportunity at this stage is important as the golden eagle entrepreneur should avoid from what I call “the opportunity trap”. The Opportunity trap happens by misleading information that pushes a new business startup into a false business concept, strategy, market, or product; but in reality it is not an opportunity for the company.

Seed stage is clarification stage of entrepreneurship. Many issues should be clarified and planned in this stage and the entrepreneur should have a clear vision and mission.

Startup

The startup is the first implementation stage for each firm development. The company starts the operations officially and tries to get the first customer. At this moment the actions start and the required resources should be prepared. One of the main obstacles of startup is the financial resources that the entrepreneurs hardly find a startup investor in particular if the product or service has less innovative idea behind and the risk is high. The initiation is usually done by the entrepreneurs and finance method is initial insider finance. The startup is a critical stage for each company. The learning process by the first concept testing happens at this moment.

The golden eagle entrepreneur is a juvenile at this stage and has a lot to learn from failure and success. The golden eagle entrepreneur uses a panoramic view in order to scan the area while having a prey focus to know where to go and what to prey on. The golden eagle entrepreneur is opportunity oriented who explores and exploits new opportunities. The golden eagle entrepreneur knows that he/she cannot prey on larger species as a mature does.

Early Growth

At this stage the company has more customers and the revenue is increasing. The company assets, employees and revenue increase and more financial and human resources are available at this stage. The company also performs with more certainty and less risk in this stage.

The golden eagle entrepreneur knows that he/she is not a juvenile anymore. He/she has an early experience and knows where to search, when to soar and what to prey on. The golden eagle entrepreneur spent a time making mistakes and facing new challenges, so he/she tries to be prepared and prevent the coming challenges by using vast home range.

During the early growth the entrepreneur faces new challenges but they are less than the startup challenges. The company has more customers and also more employees at this time. At this stage the entrepreneur should be careful of not being trapped in the opportunity trap. In early growth the trap can be caused by some early success and customers that can mislead the entrepreneur. For example, the entrepreneur might find a product that might work well, but it is not as it looks like. It might be a seasonal success or a temporary trend. In order to avoid the early growth opportunity trap, the golden eagle entrepreneur should use panoramic view and prey focus elements of the golden eagle strategy concept in order to explore new opportunities as well as doing the necessary optimizations to the current process. It is crucial to get to the top of the playground and have an outlook from the top of the skies. If the entrepreneur is involved too much in the daily tasks -that mostly is- then consulting some people from outside can be helpful.

The entrepreneur should be prepared for expansion and crisis at this time. Vast home range gives the entrepreneur enough ability to be prepared for the growth and expansion of the company as well as preparing for the future crisis.

Expansion

In this stage the company has an established brand and passed the early success. There are more stability and less risk at this time. The company generates more revenue and makes profit out of its operations.

The golden eagle entrepreneur is an adult and experienced one at this stage. He/she has much more experience and makes fewer mistakes. He/she takes bigger risks due to having more ability and valuable experience at this time. The golden eagle entrepreneur preys not only on small food, but also choses some new and larger preys that allow him/her to save more energy. The golden eagle entrepreneur has vast home range and multiple nest sites that allow him/her to overcome the coming crisis besides having new preys.

In expansion the entrepreneurs takes bigger risks in investing and creating new ideas. In this stage, intrapreneurship or corporate entrepreneurship can also be implemented inside the company for further expansion. The company might have some subsidiaries (vast home range) and as usual the process optimization and opportunity recognition and exploitation are the inevitable part of the company’s process.

Maturity

The mature company has a stable condition and the growth stops at this time. The entrepreneur should keep innovating and finding new competitive edge or just chose to exit after this stage.

The golden eagle entrepreneur is still a golden eagle with a panoramic view, prey focus, opportunity orientation, and vast home range. Vast home range is one of the most helpful tools at this time. When the prey is depleting in the area and couple of competitors are using the same area, the golden eagle can find a better place; another nest site that has already been prepared but seldom used.

A mature company can hardly survive if tries to keep the same way. In other words, no company can survive in an auto-pilot mode, in particular if the market is saturated and new competitors are entering the market. Instead, the entrepreneur should steer the company. The golden eagle entrepreneur knows exactly what to do at this time. There might be a need for more expansion and maybe an exit can be a good decision. At this stage there are mergers, acquisitions, IPOs, change of CEO, etc. … The entrepreneur does not need to stay the CEO. A golden eagle has multiple nest sites that could be used.

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