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Seven elements of sustainable success

What if every business performed optimally? Their customers loved products and services as offered.

Orders were delivered on time, every time.

People were highly engaged and motivated.

Processes, infrastructure and working practices supported high quality outcomes consistently.

Partners and suppliers were exceptional and the service received first class.

And all of this is achieved over and over again as the company responds to ever changing


‘Impossible’ you may say and you might be right. But at the same time shouldn’t it be the aim of every business to try and achieve the optimum?

For over twenty years, we have been working with organisations that are striving to perform optimally over time; meeting the needs

of their current stakeholders and assuring the ongoing success for

future stakeholders. Through that experience we believe we have witnessed the components that lead to sustainable success [1 ]. These components by themselves might not provide all the answers, but they do provide a framework for a business to find its own way.

In Telos, these seven elements have become the ‘swirl’ - an image which demonstrates the dynamic needed in all enduring organisations. Businesses that pay attention to each of these seven elements, seem to enhance their ability to sustain their success over time. They do it in their way, not by the slavish adherence to others’ wisdom or knowledge but by using their own wisdom and knowledge to make their own way. And it was our observation of others’ wisdom and knowledge that led to the formation of this model.

We will examine each of these elements in turn and propose a series of questions that could help to identify areas that might need to be addressed to assure an organisation’s own sustainability.

Telos Partners - Seven Elements of Susta
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