While everyone wants to venture into an entrepreneurial career, only a brave brand endure the growing pains and get to reap its much-praised benefits. In fact, that’s the one thing a multi-billion corporation and a small retail shop have in common— the challenge that comes with expanding a business.
Keeping up with the ever-changing demands attributed to expansion from the startup’s initial state, e.g., launching other branches, securing funds, bringing in new products or growing the brand name is a daunting task. And for a larger company, the main challenge is to maintain a unique selling point even as it introduces a new line of merchandise, implement up-to-the-minute strategies and increase the number of staff.
But regardless of the size of your business, there are tips you can follow to ease the pains associated with pushing it to the next level. Let’s dive right in;
1. Learn to say NO
One useful but often overlooked trait you should possess as an entrepreneur is the ability to say “no” when it’s obvious you should. As a human, strive to fight the inborn desire to satisfy others, especially at your expense (or your business’ in this case).
Successful entrepreneurship calls for saying “no” to proposals, business relationships or ventures that look too good from far. You may only realize it was far from good afterward only to begin regretting why you said yes before having a closer analysis or taking time to weigh options.
A thriving business is like a future gold mine. Once you begin to shine, everyone will come to you with different “ideas that can help you grow”. While you may find it difficult to turn most of the ideas down, falling for all that glitters may compromise your months or years of hard work.
2. Grow your brand based on ability and NOT opportunity
Set growth goals depending on your capacity to expand. Don’t be flattered by a sudden increase in sales or reports from an analyst like we’ve seen large corporations do. They often rush to delegate leadership duties to second-rate personnel and employees who don’t match their culture merely to make sure their new branches are up and running.
It’s wise to grow only when you feel you can. This way you can effectively ensure your leadership positions are occupied by competent staff that will facilitate growth. A smart move is to shift your current manager to the next new branch to your business’ culture is replicated faster. On top, you can offer comprehensive training on your brand’s primary values and leadership attributes to newly elected managers and employees.
3. Cut down costs and establish a favorable environment
With growth comes extra expenses. So as soon as your startup starts growing, find ways to cut down costs and create a favorable working environment that keenly looks into operating expenses as well as profit margins.
You won’t find it easy to make changes when things are already in place and working, but trimming costs is a must-do if you are looking to enjoy long-term growth.
4. Inform and explain changes to customers— staff should also help with this
While all changes you make may be for the good of your customers, failing to update clients is a shortcoming as some customers do not gladly accept changes if left in the dark. For that reason, make sure you (and your staff) communicate and give reasons for making a change that might not be understood or viewed as a negative by customers.
For example, you could put a clearly visible notice at the entrance of your business to inform clients of alterations in service delivery and have your staff explain and answer their questions as they come in.
Such a program will reduce complaints from customers and employees. Remember impulsive customers may shift to your business counterpart just because procedures have completely changed at your place and they don’t understand a thing.
5. Come up with a clear vision
Growth calls for a focused vision so you don’t stray. This vision should represent a common agreement among all the parties involved in the expansion process and if possible, be written clearly to stick in everyone’s mind. At this point, you declare what your business stands for, what you intend to achieve and why attaining it matters.
Your vision statement should be understood and adhered to by all employees. It should be the reference point from which you plan your new set of activities intended to trigger growth.
But following a clear vision is easier said than done, especially where the expansion process entails partnering with other businesses. Getting everybody on the same page may be a hell of a task.
6. Understand when to delegate duties
As an entrepreneur, you feel safer when in control of your business. Not to be bossy, it’s just a natural feeling. But while control is essential for the initial stages, a time comes when you must delegate duties or put your business in jeopardy due to delays.
Handing over responsibilities may seem uncomfortable. But it’s a necessary transition from doing everything on your own to letting those you can trust perform useful tasks and duties. Besides, it’s a great way to make sure more tasks are accomplished in less time. Therefore, as an entrepreneur, you need to pay enough attention to the delegation process to reap its huge benefits.
Hopefully, you’ve learned a few new tricks to fast track your business growth and troubleshoot when things aren’t going your way.
These tips are beyond proven. Start implementing them right away and it can only be a matter of time before you’re calling to thank us in person!
About the Author
Electronic payments expert, Blair Thomas, co-founded eMerchantBroker in 2010. His passions include writing/producing music, and travel. eMerchantBroker is America’s No. high-risk merchant account company, serving both traditional and high-risk merchants.