If you want to get rich there are several ways to go about it. The commonest way is to study hard when you’re growing up and join one of the high-paying professions like a surgeon, lawyer or dentist.

Alternatively, you could identify the next Leicester City football club and back them to win a competition at outrageous odds. Just $2,000 on Albania to win the UEFA European Football Championships at odds of 501-1 would return more than a $1,000,000 if the Albanians were to upset the odds.

A third way is to play the Oz Lotto and win the jackpot, which is about as likely as Albania winning the European Championships. So smart investors should look to buy and hold some top growth companies capable of delivering big compounded annual earnings growth rates if they really want to get rich.

Below I have five of the best.

Appen Ltd (ASX: APX) shares are up 8% today and have more than tripled in price over the course of the past year after this language technology company nearly tripled FY15 EBITDA to $13.8 million. Its technology allows automated language translations across a variety of platforms and other voice recognition services used by companies and government agencies. It has plenty of scope to keep growing globally and still trades on a reasonable valuation for a fast-growing tech stock.

Adacel Technologies Limited (ASX: ADA) sells air traffic control systems and air traffic control simulators. Like Appen it also offers services in the fast-growing voice recognition space with a share price that has gone from 52 cents to $2.64 over just the past year. It continues to win new business and may grow strongly for a long time yet.

MNF Group Ltd (ASX: MNF) is a founder-led voice over internet and telecommunications services specialist that has a strong track record of earnings and dividend growth. It is looking to deliver more growth by expanding its services internationally in the wholesale online voice services space. At home and abroad the group could continue lifting profits for a long time yet.

Webjet Limited (ASX: WEB) is the online travel services business that operates in both the business-to-consumer and business-to-business travel space. It is also well managed and delivering strong growth as its websites build a network effect that could serve it well long into the future.

Vocus Communications Limited (ASX: VOC) is in the internet services, data centre and telecommunications space. It owns a lot of fibre-optic infrastructure used primarily to provide high-speed internet and cloud services to businesses, although since its merger with the M2 Group it’s now heavily involved in the retail broadband services space. This stock could deliver strong compound earnings growth long into the future with Deutsche Bank reportedly having a $10.38 price target on the shares.

Just $50,000 spread across these top growth shares would deliver a return of more than $1 million in less than 21 years if they delivered an average compound annual growth rate of 15%. That’s a tough ask, but not impossible given their track records and growth outlooks.

Hungry for more ideas?

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Motley Fool contributor Tom Richardson owns shares of MNF Group Limited and Vocus Communications Limited.

You can find Tom on Twitter @tommyr345

The Motley Fool Australia has no position in any of the stocks mentioned. We Fools may not all hold the same opinions, but we all believe that considering a diverse range of insights makes us better investors. The Motley Fool has a disclosure policy. This article contains general investment advice only (under AFSL 400691). Authorised by Bruce Jackson.