I think Lean is the best way to scale a company. Not only does it gives us that inside and outside learning perspectives, but it also helps us manage three Lean learning concepts; SDCA, PDCA, and EDCA. It allows us to dedicate a portion of our work to what we are doing well (SDCA=Standard Work), what we need to improve (PDCA = Continuous Improvement) and what we need to explore or doing differently (EDCA= Explore, Innovation). There is no exact percentage of how much we do of each as they center around on how capable we are and how much risk we can manage. An outline of this thought process is described in the Lean Scale Up eBook.
If you can build a culture of learning, growth becomes part of everyone’s job. It is this aspect that I believe separates great companies from good companies. When I view Lean, it is not from the perspective of waste reduction. Instead, I view Lean as a knowledge building exercise. Or, a culture of learning not only from within but from outside and with customers. Take away all the fluff in sales and marketing today and I believe the single most important aspect that will determine your long-term success and sustainability in the marketplace is your role in participating in your customer’s playground.