Every business has a growth process and priorities. The basic process goes like this, first your business comes into existence, then you go from the growth stage, to reaching the survival stage, and finally moving on to the success stage of your business, where it becomes very tempting to stay with the status quo.
The exciting part is the start up stage, seeing growth coming quickly, through your own efforts. When your business really takes off, it is crucial to have strategies in place to handle the rapid growth. Delegation, outsourcing, and staffing are all factors to consider.
Without planning ahead, having the right plans and priorities in place, things might go sideways. This is one reason why many businesses suffer during the explosive growth stage.
Here are some things to keep an eye on when your business starts growing:
* Financial Resources – Rapid growth asks for cash infusion at times. Do you know the financials for your business? Can you identify sources for cash as needed, as well as emergency cash? Set a real budget for everything you need, not just through the startup, but also for maintaining your growth.
* Personnel Resources – In addition, identify the human resources that you have available to you for the business. If you are not going to hire people, are you willing to use outsourcers or contractors? If so, consider them resources to you.
* System Resources – Take note of all the technology you have available, or can afford to purchase for your business. Knowing where you want to go, will help you make good choices about the technology you want to invest in. Systems like an autoresponder, a project management system, a customer relationship management system are all important.
* Business Resources – This is everything you have available for your business. Make a list of the things you have, and what you need to buy. Setting a budget based on your financial resources is an important part of deciding what types of business resources you can buy if you need to buy anything.
Once you have identified all these factors for the business, you can start setting priorities for yourself, your business, and the expected growth.
What Are the Goals for the Business?
This is not the time to think about a short-term goal. This is the time to see the big picture, just like a dream. Where do you ultimately want your business to go? Do you want to build it big then sell it? Do you want to pass it on to your kids? Do you want to stop the business when you retire? This is important because it will tell you how you set things up, and what steps to take each day, each month, each year.
What Are Your Abilities?
It is also important to determine what your abilities are. Are you great at project management, marketing, or are your strength elsewhere? What parts of your big goal do you need help with?
Are You Good at Delegating?
If you want to grow a business past the point of being a one-man-show, then you need to learn to delegate. That means you need to be able to provide instructions to someone, and then let them do their job. You must learn to let go, to avoid bottlenecks, when people feel the need to get permission from you for everything. Set up systems, then let your people do their jobs.
What Are Your Weaknesses?
If you are weak in some areas, it is not a bad thing, as long as you realize it. For example, if you are weak with technology, which could stop your business growth, if, for instance, you are afraid to upgrade to a more powerful system, that might work better for you. Recognize your weakness, and get help!
For a business to function properly, it is imperative that as a business owner you are always aware of each spoke in the wheel of your business. Keep your growth priorities in mind and focus on one thing at a time. Consider every aspects of your business, from the stage you are at today, to where you want to go.