The fact that you have started your business is terrific, and early success feels incredible. However, to achieve the dream business that you envision, it takes more than leads and sales. If you genuinely want to grow your business successfully, you need to strategize and create a blueprint for success. This will allow you to grow systematically in a safe environment where you don’t overextend yourself even when you feel the urge to do so.
Deciding to expand your business creates new challenges, and along with this come unknown risks that you have to face.
Creating a growth plan will assist you in mitigating the risks that come with success.
As a business owner, you must first make a clear and transparent assessment of your current business, the products or services you offer, and the existing customers you have.
This will take you down a road where you methodically review all aspects of your business as it stands today.
Once that is complete, you can begin to create your “How to successfully grow your business step-by-step action plan and guide.”
This will lay the foundation for your future growth and allow you to discover ways to improve your business. So, let’s start generating new business ideas and creating your business growth plan. Don’t be afraid, as this doesn’t happen overnight.
When you decide to grow your business, it is like choosing to have a child. It is a turning point in your business life where you move to the next level.
You need to look back to grow and attract new customers, which will help grow your business.
The first step is to reconnect with your initial vision of your business.
You will then refine that vision, giving you a distinct, inspiring picture of where and why you want to grow your business. This will be the blueprint for growth and expansion.
The first step is to go back in your mind and reaffirm your original “why.” You need to identify and confirm that your dream is still relevant.
You have a great start if you still have the same passion. However, if it is not the same, then you need to find the driving force today that will help your business grow.
Once you have identified the driving force, you can say that this is your beginning point for success and growth.
The inspiration to grow your business could be to make more money, increase potential customers, or develop a new product line, just to name a few.
Here are other driving forces to consider:
It may be that you started your business for another reason, which is quite ok. However, this exercise aims to ensure that these reasons are your driving forces and, if not, to discover just what your current and future goals may be.
No matter what you discover, you want to be sure that you have a clear concept of what direction you are going in with this business growth blueprint you are creating. It will make a big difference and help you make good decisions that will lead to a successful growth strategy.
You have many ways to create growth in a business that is operating successfully, and we will dive deeper into those later.
I want you to focus now on a brainstorming exercise. The topic will be developing ideas about how you may grow your business quickly and, by doing so, give you some confidence.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
You can add many more of your ideas to this list, as the more options you have give you fuel for the fire to grow quite quickly. However, as you will see below, there are some tips you need to be aware of so you don’t grow too fast.
Once you have completed this brainstorming process, you can decide what options make the best business sense.
You now have the shortlist you created describing the best ways to move your business growth plan forward.
First, you must decide exactly what form of business growth you want.
You have a couple of choices here that are dramatically different. So, be careful and do your research so you choose the one BEST suited for your current business model.
Choice #1: Rapid Growth, like the Rabbit.
Choice #2: Slow and Steady, like the Turtle.
Both can work, but you must be careful. Let me explain why.
Rapid growth can get you financial returns quickly. However, you must have the infrastructure and resources to expand this way.
You need to ensure that you have the internal systems to handle this type of growth. Take a futuristic look at your business growth strategy if demand for your products/ services doubles tomorrow.
Could you handle that type of growth initiative, remembering that customers are pretty fickle, and if you fail to deliver, they will be quick to move on to your competitor and won’t offer you a second chance.
However, if you can handle it, go for it, as it is a great way to grow your business.
The second choice of Slow and Steady takes a longer time to see the results you are looking for but ultimately provides sustainable growth. Anytime you depend on organic growth, you can expect turtle-like results.
Unlike the rapid growth choice, slow and steady allows you to move forward using incremental steps if your resources (support, distribution, raw materials, cash flow, budget, etc.) are limited.
You must also consider in both choices what you can handle from a physical and mental perspective, as every business owner’s situation is different.
The key here is to get to a point where you can decide how you want to scale your growth. Then, try and look forward to seeing “the big picture” because your business decisions usually affect your business and personal life.
This looking-forward exercise gives you the essential components of a vision statement on where you desire to be in 12 months.
Be sure to put this to pen and paper as it becomes your blueprint for successful business growth. It will help keep you on track.
Develop a clear, concise statement that portrays your dream, goal, and mission.
Here are a few examples to show you the way, some of which you may already be familiar with.
“There will be a personal computer on every desk running Microsoft software.” (Microsoft’s original vision statement)
“Our vision is to be earth’s most customer-centric company; to build a place where people can come to find and discover anything they might want to buy online.” (Amazon.com)
“To build a community of coffee lovers in Brisbane by serving the best coffee at the best possible prices.” (Neighborhood café)
“Our salon will change the way you think about a haircut and leave you glowing both inside and out.” (Local hairdresser)
Hopefully, we have stimulated your thinking if business growth is on your radar. This is the first in our “How to Grow Your Business” series, so check back next week as we continue to expand on how to grow your small business.
“I started my own business in 1995. The Self Employed Business Academy gets it. Clear, concise, and actionable information. You may be in business for yourself, but with the self Employed Business Academy at your fingertips, you won't be by yourself"
Ed Carey, AMG, LLC