If you’re at that critical growth stage and want to be sure you’re scaling the right way and at the right pace, there are a few key factors to bear in mind that can make all the difference.
1. Know your market inside-out
All the questions you asked when starting the business are just as valid, perhaps more so, as you’re growing it. Who are your customers going to be? What do you offer that’s different? Who is the competition and where are the gaps in what it provides?
In particular, you’ll want to know where scale already exists in your market and which of your competitors are already in that space. That way you can get a grip on what sort of investment you’re likely to need to exploit those bigger opportunities.
2. Be prepared for the roadmap to change
Scaling a business never goes 100 per cent according to plan – there might be external economic factors at play, or your product development might take longer than expected. Lots of start-ups get bogged down in numbers and processes but there has to be some element of flexibility in the business plan – which means focusing on the end result, not on how you’re getting there.
Ideally, have a Plan B for the business in the back of your mind (which is, admittedly, easier in some sectors than others).
3. Know your figures
Scale means knowing where the price pressure is coming from – the costs, overheads and ROI as well as where you can cut corners or make investment to focus on growth.
As the business is growing, you need to know that hiring five more salespeople will result in X more revenue and that the most investment should go on product line Y and not the others. It also means understanding where you don’t need to scale: you might have 15 operational employees, but do you need to hire more to cope with new business or could you better spend that money elsewhere?
Read more tips on page two…
Share this story