Growing Your Small Business
Congratulations! The launch is behind you. You’ve successfully gotten your business up and off the ground. And now you’re ready to grow.
Gearing up to grow your business can be both exciting and intimidating. Things are going well and you don’t want to stumble as you enter the next phase.
Read on for our most important tips to successfully grow your business.
Do your research
Before you get into growth mode, you need to do some research. You’ll want to have a good idea of what your business is capable of when charting its future.
Take time to assess your business. Consider all of the records and information you have available to you. Analyze how your business has done in the past and attempt to make projections of how you think your business will do in the future.
You should also consider talking to your trusted advisors. Whether it’s a business consultant, accountant, or attorney – input from these experts can help you make good decisions about the future of your business.
Don’t try to do it all
It’s your business. And it’s natural for business owners to feel protective over what they’ve built.
However, insisting on doing everything yourself can lead to burnout and a lack of outside perspectives doesn’t leave much room for creativity or innovation.
Determine who you can rely on to help you get things done. This could be an employee, a consultant, independent contractors, or anyone else who can help lift the load.
Do set goals
When you’re growing your business it’s important to set goals. Without a target that you’re aiming to hit, it’s hard to know if you’re on track or trending in the right direction.
Your goals should be SMART. This means they are Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Relevant, and Time Bound.
Don’t rely on informal agreements
Your business agreements should always be in writing. Trusting written agreements rather than casual, verbal commitments helps ensure that commitments are kept.
Do look for new customers
You’ll want to keep your existing customers happy as your business begins to grow. But it’s also important for you to be finding and connecting with new customers and markets.
Conducting a market analysis can help you identify potential new customers. You’ll learn where they live, work, how they spend their money, and other valuable information.
You may also be considering adding new products or services, which will allow you to reach new audiences.
Don’t rush your hiring
When your business begins to grow you may find yourself needing to hire more employees. It’s exciting to begin to grow your team.
However, you shouldn’t rush to create and fill positions. Think carefully about the position you want to fill. Take time to create a job description that details the skills and qualifications you’re looking for.
When you do post the job and begin interviewing, take your time to assess all candidates. A bad hiring decision can do more harm to your business than leaving a position unfilled. Waiting for the right candidate will be worth it.
Get Help From the Experts
If you’re ready to grow, we’re ready to help. The Missouri Small Business Development Center at Missouri State University works with business owners every day to start and grow businesses.
Establish a growth plan for your business at our upcoming Growth Strategies training on Tuesday, December 3. You’ll develop a network of fellow business owners who can relate to your day-to-day, as well as a better understanding of growth opportunities, operational efficiencies, and more.