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It is a well-established fact that economies are cyclical – characterized by natural fluctuations between expansion (growth) and contraction (recession). While this macro-economic feature presents a nice fulcrum for politicians to dramatize their performance or their opponents’ ‘failures’, as someone who has been involved in business over the years, I cannot help but wonder why only some businesses are able to ride the crests and troughs of these economic waves, while others seem to succumb to the fluctuations of domestic and global economic cycles.

Whatever the factors influencing the length of these periods, it appears that only some businesses manage to transcend generation after generation, while others are unable to – irrespective of their size: micro-, small-, medium or large enterprise. Have you ever wondered in which category your business belongs?


In my search for answers, a logical place to begin seemed to be with an analysis of the behavioral patterns of the top tier Fortune 500 companies, and to look more closely at some successful smaller enterprises both regionally and internationally, to find out what they all have in common, notwithstanding the differences in their size or geographic location. It turns out that irrespective of the industry, whether service, manufacturing or other, there are indeed some proven common threads that drive the operation of these companies.

Influenced by my Quality Management background and deep appreciation for measurement, I have converted these common features into seven basic questions that I believe should be asked by anyone interested in their business’ survival.

UNESCO Science Report (2021): The Race against Time – Caricom Chapter

Alison S. Gajadhar-Plummer, Ishenkumba A. Kahwa

Is Your Business Hard-wired for Success?

Alison S. Gajadhar-Plummer (Business Focus, 2018 May/June issue)

Phthalimides: Supramolecular Interactions in Crystals, Hypersensitive Solution 1H-NMR Dynamics and Energy Transfer to Europium(III) and Terbium(III) States

Alison S. Gajadhar-Plummer, Robertha C. Howell, Selvin H. Edwards, Ishenkumba A. Kahwa, Gary L. McPherson, Joel T. Mague, Andrew J. P. White and David J. Williams; Molecules (Vol 8, 2003, 565 –592)

Synthesis and Structure of N,N’-Ethylenebis(p-toluenesulphoamide)

A. S. Gajadhar-Plummer, I. A. Kahwa and J. T. Mague; Acta Cyrstallographica(Vol. E57, 2001, 68-69)

One-pot synthesis, structure and luminescence of novel one dimensional lanthanide(III) tetramethoxyborates

S. Gajadhar-Plummer, I. A. Kahwa, A. J. P. White and D. J. Williams; J. of Inorganic Chemistry (Vol. 38, no. 8, 1999, 1745-1753)

Chemistry of rare earth hypoco-ordinate oxocluster cations: Formation of novel oxoacetate clusters

A.S. Gajadhar-Plummer, I. A. Kahwa, A. J. P. White and D. J. Williams; Inog. Chim. Acta.(Vol.128, 1998, 201-206)

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