ExecConnect Event Sheds Light on Indiana Mid-Markets

In 2008, the Indiana Chamber Foundation released a study titled "Accelerating Growth in Indiana’s Mid-Market Companies," which focused on how established Indiana organizations could learn from each other. Today, the Indiana Chamber, Barnes & Thornburg and Butler Business Accelerator hosted a seminar to further discuss issues impacting mid-market companies.

Some notable facts that came to light in the study:

  • 3% of all Indiana-based, for-profit firms landed in the mid-market definition of between $5 million and $100 million in annual sales
  • But those 3% of Indiana firms accounted for 30% (386,808) of the jobs and 40.4% (more than $55 billion) of total sales for Indiana-headquartered businesses

Governor Mitch Daniels opened the discussion today by educating the nearly 150 business leaders in attendance about the positive steps Indiana has taken in recent years to become more business friendly.

He noted that not only are companies from many other states relocating to Indiana, but the Hoosier state has gone from 37th in per capita spending in 2004 to 45th in 2008. Daniels added the state’s debt is down 40% since 2005, a time span that saw most debts around the nation increase.

"You’ll be amazed at how much government you’ll never miss," he quipped.

He pointed to Indiana’s budgetary position as being in far better shape than many in the region, or even the country.

"When I can’t sleep, I don’t count sheep," he said. "I count all the states I’m glad I’m not governor of."

Breakout sessions took place on a variety of topics, including strategic planning and health care reform.

Regarding strategic planning, Scott Webber of Volatus Advisors explained, "As a guy who invests and helps young companies grow, we want to determine what we want to be three to five years down the road and identify a path to get there.

"We’ll do an off-site retreat and figure out where we want to be, then track the steps in reverse. That way you can identify any gaps in advance."

Perhaps David Lindsey of Defender Direct most aptly summed up the need for companies to focus when developing a strategic plan by harkening back to an old proverb: "If you chase two rabbits, they will both escape."