Top-Line Growth

Written by John Minnich

John Minnich is founder and principal of a business advisory practice. He specializes in strategy execution, leadership, and management. With decades of business and financial experience, he partners with clients on strategic business initiatives.

April 14, 2021

Planning for the Top-Line Growth You Need

A strategy pyramid helps you illustrate vision and mission together with your team. Successful organizations vertically align business units with organization-wide strategies and goals. The pyramid provides visual direction. Long-term vision and mission appear at the top. At the foundation, action plans, tactics, and initiatives support. To learn more, read our insights article “Strategy through the Lens of Holistic and Objective-Based Information.”

The Annual Budget Process

As part of ongoing strategy, organizations create budgets. It all starts with top-line growth, the revenue/sales budget. Answering questions such as, “What do we anticipate as revenue for the year?” The budget outlines business expectations for what the company wants to achieve for any given period. Successful management teams monitor and adjust accordingly when new, significant information is known.


  • Revenue and expense estimates
  • Cash flow expectations
  • Debt management and reduction

Through continuous improvement, businesses review budget-to-actual variances to make proactive adjustments throughout the year. The budget should be a part of ongoing management, a living and breathing document. Successful businesses also compare current year to prior year results.


Working in tandem, it’s also important for a business to forecast financials including cash. Whereas a budget depicts the direction management wants to lead the business, a financial forecast helps articulate whether the company is reaching its targets. It helps show the course for where the company is headed in the future.

Cash Flow Management

Cash is presented on the balance sheet for a reason: It’s the most important asset, or resource, to an organization. Management teams need to master cash flow management. Businesses can easily fall into the trap of only looking at the P&L, that’s income statement, budget-to-actual results and lose sight of cash flow expectations. The latter is disastrous for an organization. A slippery slope. Slippery enough that an outside turnaround expert will need to be called upon to work with senior leadership and management. It goes without saying: It’s critical for senior leadership teams to listen to the sound advice of their senior financial leaders. It’s also critical for financial leaders to educate business units, their internal clients, on financial matters that impact them.

Top-Line Growth

Business advisors with both business and financial acumen advise business owners and executives on top-line growth. Through a facilitative and collaborative approach, business advisors and your leadership team:

  • Look at your marketing
  • Review your key marketing drivers
  • Review your key sales drivers
  • Reflect upon the financial impact of the key sales and marketing drivers
  • Prioritize projects with agreed fresh actions

You are then able to focus on the implementation of your growth plans with fresh focus.

The Benefits to You of Focus

Top-line review service is tailored to suit your needs and consists of a series of meetings to match what you want. The service provides you with the following:

  • Fresh focus and feeling more in control
  • Greater awareness of your growth factors
  • Focus upon any areas of opportunity
  • Proactive ideas on growth
  • High-tech interactivity
  • A copy of each meeting
  • A chance to experience how business advisors operate
How a Top-Line Review Service Works

Business advisors help you articulate your ultimate growth aspirations and using an innovative and interactive high-tech approach, look at key areas of growth and that are most important to you.


Facilitation of your growth goals and ultimate aims.


Review of your sales and marketing and the impact on growth.


Review of what is possible and how to achieve it.

A Successful Future

Whether your business takes a top-down or bottom-up, collaborative approach to budgeting, it’s critical to know your business drivers. Financial management is continuous learning and improvement.

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{I have never met a man more dedicated to learning than John Minnich! While at Concordia Lutheran High School, I saw him not only dive headfirst into understanding the uniqueness and quirks of parochial school, but into learning fundraising and all he could about the charitable, nonprofit world as well. It was hard keeping up with him and his latest class/certification! His planning and willingness to know an organization inside and out will be an asset to anyone.{
Jon Dize
Fundraising Coach, Mentor & Director of Advancement, The Lutheran Schools Partnership
{I have known John for many years and worked with him on Indiana CPA Society activities. He has always been an active participant who contributes to the success of those activities. I wouldn't hesitate to work with him in the future.{
Richard Wheeler
Owner, Wheeler & Associates, PC
{It is rare to find someone as knowledgeable and dedicated to their work as John Minnich. During my time at Indiana Tech, John demonstrated that he was dedicated to helping those who are around him; students, the university, the community, and not-for-profit organizations in the area. As I continued into my professional career, John and I crossed paths on a local Board we both serve on, and he selflessly agreed to help guide me through some professional development and career placement. I would recommend John to any of my colleagues when it comes to learning more or developing their skillset in the field of accounting and business strategy.{
Nathan Kolmerten
Senior Accountant, Paragon Medical
{John Minnich is an intelligent businessman and experienced educator, as a Chief Financial Officer and as a University Professor. I have known John for several years. He has integrated a diverse set of skills to develop an essential resume. I am also impressed with the level of John's activity across Fort Wayne, giving back to the community as a Board Member at various organizations including Junior Achievement.{
Rex Peters
Global Sales Manager, Fort Wayne Metals
{I have known John as a client for about 3 years. He has shown himself to be an experienced and dedicated professional. He is generous in whatever he undertakes.{
Cindy Stehlik
Senior Sales Executive, PrimePay
{I have enjoyed getting to know John, and I'm consistently impressed with his ability to develop positive, warm relationships in multiple communities: Manchester University; the Indiana CPA Society; the Ft. Wayne chapter of Financial Executives International; and throughout the greater Ft. Wayne business community. John seems genuinely motivated to serve, and I think of him as one of the "Go-Givers."{
Terry Bush
Director, Kruggel Lawton CPAs
{I have worked with John in the past as member of the finance committee of a non-profit board. He has strong analytical skills and is clearly knowledgeable when it comes to financial statements, including matters relating to budgeting. He has provided great insight in working out solutions for complicated matters. I have found John to be very attentive to details and consider him a valuable resource.{
Gary Windmiller
Vice President, Senior Trust Advisor, PNC Wealth Management
{John is a generous volunteer, skilled connector, and talented professional. He is always willing to share what he knows, make introductions, and lend his time and knowledge to worthy causes. If you're not yet connected to John, I'd encourage you to get to know him.{
Anthony Juliano
VP, Account Service & Business Development, Asher Agency
{I have had the pleasure of working alongside John in a variety of ways: as a faculty member at Indiana Tech, as a member of the Rotary Club of Fort Wayne (Downtown), and on a variety of community initiatives. John is someone I trust, and someone that I know will represent the quality of work that adds value and improves upon what has previously been done. His energy, enthusiasm, professionalism, and spirit of service is changing our community for the better!{
Staci Lugar Brettin
Associate Professor of Marketing and Management, Indiana Tech
{John and I have gotten to know each other more in the past year since leading the membership development committee for our Fort Wayne chapter of FEI. John's willingness to listen & learn, his pleasant demeanor, and his growth leadership style has contributed to the monumental success of our chapter. My conversations with John are always meaningful and I walk away feeling a sense of appreciation and value.{
{John and I completed a leadership training series together, and John's professionalism, business acumen, and friendly disposition set him apart as a natural leader and engaging teammate. I would love to work with or for John!{
Mike Ripley
Employee Benefits Consultant, Hylant
{I have known John since college and we have kept in touch over the years. His desire for continuing to learn new skills, be involved in the community & profession, and pursuit to give back to others is inspiring. John lifts up those around him and always continues to seek new ways to add to his versatility as a professional.{
Travis Penrod
VP / Chief Financial Officer, ProFed Credit Union
{I was a client of John's firm while he worked for the public accounting firm of DWD. He was dedicated to outstanding customer service at that time. I have seen him continue to grow academically and professionally. And, he's just a nice guy!!!!{
Doug Worthington
Retired CFO, Retired
{John is an extremely cooperative and insightful person. He knows his product and he will go the extra mile to see that things are working well.{
Lynn Means
Payroll/Accounts Payable Coordinator, McKinley Hall, Inc.
{John is a great person to work with. He is very knowledgeable and helped us immensely to get the Sage software up and running.{
Toni Lach
Purchasing Manager, Geminus Corporation
{John facilitated several trainings on Sage/MIP software for our company. He was very knowledgeable, helpful, and willing to walk us through our issues. We are lucky to have him available as a consultant!{
Donna Stefansky
Finance Director, Catholic Charities Diocese of Toledo
{John has provided excellent accounting and MIP support to the Indiana Perinatal Network for several years. He is quick to respond to our requests and explains the material and processes in a way that is understandable to all. Without hesitation, I highly recommend John.{
Leah York
President, Talbott Talent
{John is great to work with, he is both personable and knowledgeable. Whenever I have a question about creating, processing, or producing something in our accounting software, he is quick to respond with patience and expertise.{
LaShawnda Flowers
Vice President of Finance and Administration, United Way of Saint Joseph County
{John Minnich has served our organization as a software consultant on many projects as well as on-going support of our accounting software. He has consistently delivered an excellent product for a great price. We will continue to use his services. David Gregory, Michigan Humane Society{
David Gregory
Senior Vice President, Newport ONE
{I worked with John collaboratively on several projects. He consistently invested himself in the project at hand, acquiring the appropriate technical knowledge in order to make the project a success. John definitely takes pride in making sure every outcome is optimal and will do what is necessary to get there. A thirst for knowledge and growth, coupled with diligence and follow complemented with a cheerful and positive outlook.{
Chris Ashby
Vice President of Product Management, NWEA
{I cannot recommend John highly enough, his high level of personal integrity and professionalism, combined with a unique combination of technical acumen and an in-depth understanding of accounting systems, makes John a valuable asset. It was a pleasure working with him in the past, and I welcome any opportunity to work with him again in the future. Stacy Swingley, CTO Altitude Technologies LLC{
Stacey Swingley
Global Infrastructure Architect Lead, IBM Hybrid Cloud Analytics, IBM

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