Excellent small businesses should have three primary attributes. First, they should be learning organizations. Individuals in the organization should be like members of an Olympic team, where the best keep learning how to get better.

Second, excellent organizations should have clearly defined areas in which they have chosen to be leaders, and they should be relentless in their pursuit of those areas.

Third, the ultimate mark of business excellence is the ability to sustain success-to handle the difficult times well and to continue to grow stronger and better. As you read on, you’ll learn a step-by-step approach that helps your organization learn, lead and last.

Over the next three weeks, I will be going more in-depth with these three attributes.