Scaling a business is no walk in the park. In fact, according to many CEOs, it’s one of the most difficult things they do in their whole career. You would have thought that repeating the same business processes would be relatively straightforward. And if that’s really what’s happening, it is. But the problem is that scaling almost always introduces new complexities, management structures, and resource requirements. Worse still, taking it slow often isn’t an option. Entrepreneurs often have to act now to take advantage of an opportunity before it disappears. So how can you scale now and avoid paying later?
Prepare For What You Could Be, Not What You Are
One of the biggest reasons why more entrepreneurs don’t go on to make mega money is because they have inbuilt hard-wired biases against their own potential success. In short, they simply don’t want to entertain the possibility that they could make a lot of money.
This is why expert scaling consultants like Martin Norbury recommend that all business leaders starting out take a look at their revenue potential. Often they can find out what kind of business they could be -a $1 million, $5 million or $50 million a year business – just with a few back-of-the-envelope calculations.
Use Scalable Technologies
Practically nobody uses in-house computer networks anymore. Most savvy entrepreneurs instead opt for cloud-based IT support. Why? Well, the main reason is the ease with which it scales. The cloud allows your business to buy more capacity on an as-needed basis and prevents you from having to splash out on expensive infrastructure. Most cloud services are granular, meaning you can expand your usage one gigabyte at a time. You can also add more accounts as and when you need them or take on new members of staff. It’s this flexibility which makes it so attractive to those at the top of business.
Establish Rules, And Stick To Them
“Rules” might sound like they’re more suitable to the school playground than a dynamic new business. But they’re essential for a number of reasons. It’s not just to make sure that your colleagues behave. It’s to ensure that your processes are delivered consistently. Inconsistent process delivery can result in confused customers and internal administrative issues. This, in turn, can lead to lost business and higher costs. Rules, therefore, are a way for your business to scale while ensuring that everybody remains on the same page.
Look For Immediate Barriers To Growth, And Address Them
Part of the job of being an entrepreneur is to look for potential barriers to growth and how to overcome them. One common barrier is the entry of a competitor into your particular niche. Think ahead carefully about which companies could potentially challenge you for market dominance. Is there a way that you could exploit a first-mover advantage to effectively block other companies from entering the market and stealing market share? Are there any intellectual property protections you could benefit from to protect your businesses from the threat of more sophisticated companies copying your work? If so, then use them to avoid stagnation.