Growing your business comes with a lot of challenges, some foreseeable, some not. It is for this reason that most companies tend to go out of business during a growth or expansionism phase due to being unable to cope with the changes that must be made in order to survive. The good news is that by taking into consideration certain factors, you can grow your business safely, and without fear of biting off more than you can chew.
Let’s take a look at seven business growth attributes that are often ignored, and how you can implement them into your own business strategy.
1) More Customers Need More Customer Service
When it comes right down to it, a business is about people. In one way or another, your business exists to serve others, providing them with valuable goods, services, or other resources. This, of course, means that one area you can’t afford to overlook when growing your business is your customer service.
The logic is very simple: the more customers you have, the more customer service staff you will need. In some cases, you may even need to implement new customer service systems to ensure that all of your customers are adequately served at all times. Taking care of your customers will ease the growing process, leading to greater revenue generation and profits.
2) Covering the Needs of Your Employees
One thing to remember is that your business isn’t just about your customers, but also about your own employees. As your business grows, so will the needs of your employees as you begin to hire more people to fill new positions. This can place a strain on your business if you’re not careful, but there are ways to ease the process.
First and foremost is making sure your employees have all the benefits they need to be productive, happy, and loyal to your company. One pivotal element to it is having a life insurance, which is an often overlooked perk in many cases. Make it an added benefit for them apart from the monetary or other rewards and grab a deal that is a win-win for both you (employer) and the employee. Give them a gift of life insurance from a trusted insurer and win their loyalty.
3) Why You Need Reputation Management
When you’re a small business it can be easy to overlook this factor and focus solely on branding. However, as you grow, so do your negative reviews on sites like Yelp! and other review platforms. Not to worry though, as your positive reviews should grow at an exponentially higher rate.
The real issue here is that statistically speaking, you stand a much higher chance of attracting individuals that will do everything in their power to tear your reputation down when you have a larger business. This can make it a good idea to hire a reputation management firm or expert who can assist in suppressing this kind of behaviour while at the same time disseminating positive stories, articles, and other information about your business to counteract it.
4) Leadership Starts from the Top
A company is only as good as its leadership, and a company that is growing will certainly have more leadership positions to fill. The key to ensuring high-quality leadership is in taking great care who you hire or promote to such positions. Furthermore, you have to consider the politics of such scenarios as inter-office conflicts can arise from sudden leadership changes.
A good general rule to follow is to lead by delegation, not abdication. In other words, oversight is key. Don’t trust anyone to operate free of checks and balances, regardless of their position. Accountability is a core factor for good leadership practices as is accurately communicating business goals to those in key leadership positions.
5) Opening New Marketing Channels
Marketing is the lifeblood of your business, without it, you would starve for customers. As your business grows you may find your normal marketing strategies and channels are inefficient and ineffective for larger-scale operations. This may mean that you need to expand your marketing reach into new areas.
On the other hand, growing your business will also allow for new marketing strategies and techniques to be used that were impossible before. Depending on your business model, strategies such as collecting donations, building a mailing list, and using online ads can all be options to consider.
6) New Tools and Software
These days we let technology handle many aspects of our business. And as your business grows you will need to reevaluate whether or not your current systems are appropriate for a larger business structure.
For example, if you have your use network that offers end-user interaction, the servers may not be equipped to handle a significant increase in traffic as your business grows. This can lead to crashes and other problems that could cripple your business. Your best bet is to test and evaluate these systems so that you can upgrade them before it becomes a problem.
7) The Power of Outsourcing
Doing everything “in-house” as a small business might make sense, but for a medium size to large business, you will definitely want to begin outsourcing some of your tasks. Tasks such as networking security, data entry, and a variety of tasks that require minimal skill and can be done online are all great candidates to be outsourced.
Finding freelancers to handle these tasks is also very easy. There are tons of job sites online, all offering a wide variety of personnel that come with different levels of skill, experience, and pricing making it easy to find the perfect freelancer.
Grow or Die – The Harsh Reality
Like plants, businesses are meant to grow, and if you stifle that growth, they tend to die. While the growth phase of a business is definitely the most dangerous, it is also the most critical. The key to getting through it is to plan for growth and execute your growth based strategies in an intelligent, not reactionary manner. If you react instead of act, you are doomed to fail.
Thankfully, all it takes is a little preparation to ensure the healthy growth of your business. There may be some trying times ahead, but with foresight, and careful strategic planning, you can minimize the negatives, and focus on earning more revenue and profits.