Did you know that there are over 30 million small businesses active in the US right now?
Some of these started with the goal of creating a small-to-medium sized business from day one. Others were side-hustles that took off and the owner found themselves with a profitable business.
However they started, every growing business must be carefully managed to ensure longevity.
If you want to develop your business into something greater, you will be interested in business scaling. How can you do this successfully?
Check out our guide to the basics of business scaling in seven essential steps.
1. Plan, Plan, Plan
It is true that your quest to expand will include risk-taking and leaving your comfort zone. However, risk-taking is always less dangerous if it’s backed up with solid thinking and planning.
Planning your business scaling helps you to maintain the required levels of production. It will help you to implement your scaling steps in a logical manner at the right time.
Planning ahead also helps you to identify barriers to growth ahead of time. You can then plan to implement steps to overcome them. This may involve the early deployment and usage of organizational software.
Laying your plan on the table in advance communicates your vision to your team. You can then benefit from their objective viewpoints.
2. Know Your Audience
You are looking to expand your business because it has already enjoyed some degree of success. Now consider the customers who have contributed to your success.
Putting yourself in the place of your customers, think about how they will be affected by your business plan. What level of production or support will you need to maintain to retain their trust and business?
While you do not need to build your business around their viewpoints alone, respecting their wishes will go a long way to retaining your customer base. Further, if your expansion is in line with their hopes for your company, you may just earn yourself some influential brand ambassadors.
3. Time is Money
Whilst change can be a time of excitement for a company, ensure that you maintain discipline. All expansion and scaling should be tied to timelines.
Times of change bring unexpected and often urgent tasks. To get ahead, develop the skills of those around you to use the tools and software on hand. You may want to consider bringing in experts to help you to streamline processes, or train up your team in the use of software.
Make use of those times when everything is going according to plan to ensure that you are prepared for unexpected turns of events.
4. Analyze Data
Telling the future accurately is impossible. However, with big data and analytics, you can come pretty close. Big data is the wide range of data that businesses produce. Everything from market trends, customer relationship management data, and retail data can be included.
This is then machine analyzed and the analytics data made available for investigation and deployment. It can provide valuable statistics and insights regarding customer behavior. It is the best way of predicting how your customers will react to the changes you are planning.
This kind of analysis can also help you understand where the bottlenecks are in your business. These can be addressed as a priority in your scaling plans. By doing this your business increases in efficiency from the early stages of expansion.
5. Become Comfortable with Change
No matter how clear your vision is, organizational change is never easy. Ensure that you understand the anxiety that your team and initial stakeholders will feel. Help them to see the challenges as opportunities rather than risks.
It is especially important to remind them of their role in the organizations. They need to understand that their contribution is vital and will contribute to the success of the expanded company.
This is an opportunity for them to learn new skills and increase their value to the organization. They can rest assured that time will be provided for them to adapt to the changes and any new roles that they will undertake.
Creating a plan to scale your business with your team in mind requires an understanding of their makeup. Set aside time for communication with your team to hear their thoughts and concerns. This will help you to pace the changes according to the abilities of the team members.
6. Evaluate Your Team
During scaling stages, you have a unique opportunity to see how team members adjust to changes. The insights you can gain regarding strengths and weaknesses can be very important.
Scaling up a team that does not share your vision of the company and your product can be very difficult. However, this also gives you an idea as to where you need to strengthen before further expansion.
Is reaching out to the person and convincing them of the value of change enough, or will new forward-thinking talent need to be included in future stages?
Do current personnel have the ability to take on new roles, do they have the bandwidth in their personal life to learn new skills and accept responsibility?
When weaknesses are found you may be able to benefit from back office outsourcing companies to meet skill needs.
By clearly understanding your team’s views and potential at an early stage, you will be able to add agility to your plan.
7. Hire Dependable Staff
Often it is not the creative talent that is hard to find. It is the oversight that will manage and motivate the creative talent that is crucial.
As the changes begin to roll, you will want dependable managers who can manage staff in a calm and professional manner, whilst retaining a clear vision of your goals.
Staff who take responsibility seriously, take ownership of issues and see them through to the end should be rewarded. These are your managers of the future.
Business Scaling that Ensures Success
If you are interested in turning your side hustle into a fully-fledged business, you will know how important business scaling is. We are committed to helping people like you.
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