It’s the goal of every business to grow and expand and to increase their bottom line – cash flow – but what happens when you go big, will your business cope?
The scenario plays out so many times in so many industries. A once amazing business known for its customer service or product quality soon gets so popular they are struggling to keep up with demand. The struggles bring about poor quality, missed opportunities and sometimes negative press and complaints.
act like a big business from the start
When starting my business, I was once told to act like a big business from the start. By this they meant have processes in place for everything, action plans and a solid business plan and outlook. I knew what I wanted to achieve and to this day, I still aim for the same key goals.
Starting and running a business without a plan for when things do go big, and your brand can be called a success, is like running a 10km marathon when you struggle to walk briskly. You need to be prepared. There must be a plan set in place for when things get busier. Will you put on more staff, will you limit your intake of work, is there an option to franchise or open other locations for your brand?
Go Big or Go Home
In the end, the goal is to run a successful and profitable business, right? I will add to this. Not only do you want it to be profitable, I believe you also need it to be healthy.
By this, I refer to the coping mechanisms built into the business structure. What happens when work load increases, is there extra staff on call, do you have the raw materials to increase production and most importantly, is your staff and management happy? Happiness is a huge factor these days when running a business.
The most successful business owners and entrepreneurs enjoy what they do. This can be tricky, depending on the business. Many business owners like to keep a finger in every pie so they know the ins and outs of daily business. Others prefer a manager that reports to them with updates on business progress, problems and news. Your individual traits can affect which scenario works best for your situation.
It Starts at the Top
Happiness flows from the top, just like a waterfall. If management are happy, there is a good chance they will endeavour to ensure the employees are also happy. Happy, or satisfied employees will be more productive, and in turn will affect the bottom line of the business through quality work, customer service or loyalty – maybe all three.
To be happy at the top, you need to feel like you are in control. The best way to be in control of your business is to recognise where it is currently, where it is heading and what hurdles could be expected along the way. An action plan, strategy or business plan with key indicators of goals and milestones will help with this.
Don’t Kill your Brand Before It Blooms
Most importantly, make sure your brand has a game plan. When things do get busier, don’t let what made your business the success it is today wither away. Strengthen it through smart staffing, better processes and goal setting.
I am sure we can all think about a business that was once great and now is just another brand. When it comes to the success of your business, sure it could be all about the money, but that won’t last if you ignore the important factors like production and staff growth, project acquisition limits and happiness throughout the brand.
I hope my two cents has inspired you to go back and look at your brand and see where it can improve and think about what makes it successful, is it the people, your processes, or the product?
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