The idea of scaling up your business to generate more revenue seems like a safe way to keep your operation moving in the right direction, but the truth is: Not every company is suitable for rapid business growth.
Even with the perfect plan, a ramp-up can generate a loss that will affect your business for years. This is exactly why a rapid scale-up shouldn’t be taken lightly.
It’s critical to prepare for various challenges that may present themselves during the scaling process so you can navigate how to come out on top.
Weigh the Risks
Getting familiar with the risks of scaling up is Step #1 in preparedness. It’ll help you, along with your stakeholders, determine if this risk is worth the reward.
Take time to dig beyond the obvious financial risk. Yes, scaling-up means a jump in fiscal responsibilities, but while you should plan for a rise in office expenses, employment costs and a proper accounting partner, there are other risks you’ll face.
Prepare for a shift in performance. When you finally decide scale-up, there’s going to be a major learning curve. Onboarding and training new hires will take away from day-to-day activity time.
There will also be the need to learn new skills. For example, senior managers may need to learn specific skills and step into more valuable roles like HR or PR.
Perhaps you’re adding on a new customer relationship manager (CRM) and need someone to keep it organized and pinpoint sales opportunities. They’ll need time to overcome the learning curve that comes with these business changes.
Growing pains are inevitable but nothing makes the process roll smoother than your team being on one accord.
Stop for a moment to consider whether your company culture fosters the spirit of growth. It’s easier to create a great company culture in the beginning than it is to reshape it later.
Healthy company culture means everything while your business is evolving. During the uncomfortable growth stages, you’ll want your employees to be comfortable sharing feedback with you.
Team members are more likely to stay around when they feel heard and understood — even when times get tumultuous. Keep this in mind and make sure your team is solid before you kick everything in high gear for the sake of scaling up.
For 27% of entrepreneurs, the hardest thing to find is talented staff or contractors.
When working to grow a business, look at processes that can be improved. Most people generally turn their attention towards a more digital shift. Don’t be misled. Technology isn’t a one-and-done fix.
When scaling up your small business, consider the fact that you’ll have to successfully execute the implementation of these digital additions.
The upside to adding technology to your team is that it can help you automate those tedious tasks that eat up so much of the staff’s time.
Save employee positions for creative spots like social media experts and marketing strategists. Use those creative positions to drive innovation.
Foster innovation before you shoot for growth
- Identify your hustlers and task them with challenging assignments
- Reward employees who work innovatively and give them credit
- Recruit innovative thinkers during your hiring process
Scaling up your business can be exciting but once you begin to grow, it can be hard to stop. If you notice your attempt to ramp up is failing, pull back and try to recover before you and your staff burn out.
Keep in mind: Businesses can thrive while small so be sure to consider the various factors that will affect scaling up before you take the leap.