There are dozens of articles and blog posts written every day about what you need to really grow a business. Most tout the most obvious aspect – more money and financing; better marketing; added sales; a raving customer; etc.
Tell me something I don’t know if I have a business. You need all those things just to have a business!
But, what are those more subtle things that really put you over the top? What are the competencies separating the super successful businesses from just the average ones?
One of my past clients recently asked me to help them out as they are getting frighteningly close to the point of out of control. It’s caused me to look closely at the subtle things that separate the BIG from the privately owned business.
Here are 5 competencies lacking in those businesses that can make the jump to rapid growth:
- Clear Vision for the Future
- Already Mastered Delegating
- Solidified the Key Metrics for Monitoring the Operation
- Developed a Senior Management Team
- Solid and scalable processes and systems
A clear vision is necessary because it provide the litmus test for every decision made. If a clear vision isn’t defined managers as well as employees don’t have any idea whether they are making the right decisions for the company or not.
The result is one of two possibilities. One, you spend time and resources undoing the wrong decisions. Or two, nobody is willing to make a decision and you waste valuable owner time answering questions every day that could easily be handled by others.
Delegating is more than just handing out tasks to others. That’s just doling our assignments. Delegating is all about:
- setting a direction
- providing quality expectation
- Defining the performance parameters
Then you let them lose and monitor what happens. Most people just give a very simple assignment with no parameters and then wonder why they don’t get the result they expected. It’s because they never set the expectation on the front side and how success would be measure.
Key Metrics for Monitoring the Operation
If you don’t know the cause and effect of your operation you’re dead before you start. It’s not as hard to figure out as you may think. You can quickly and easily use our Tuning Your Revenue Engine model to determine the key metrics by which to manage your business.
Note that they formulas you figured out earlier in the growth cycle will change over time. As you speed up the process the formula may change. You will no doubt look for ways to streamline the operation and squeeze more out of every resource. As you do, your baseline will change. Just make sure that you keep an eye on this and tweak it every step of the way.
Developed a Senior Management Team
You cannot face rapid growth alone! The primary goal during the rapid growth stage is making sure that no part of the business outpaces any other part of the business. This takes real mangers at the helm of every department/function.
Without a senior management team you become the limiting factor in your business. This isn’t scalable and reduces the value of your business.
True business investors look for businesses with strong teams. This spreads the risk with a company in a way that gives confidence that a business can survive the loss of one of the key personnel
Solid and Scalable Processes and Systems
Finally, processes and systems are a must! If you can quickly and easily train someone to do a job in your business it will slow you down.
During rapid growth one of the biggest challenges is always ramping up staff. Again, investors understand this fact. Thus they are looking that cash flow in a company is created by solid systems. This gives the business self-sustainable and investors love that!
You easily can find 100 other things that are necessary for rapid growth. But, I have found 1 or more of these 5 competencies is always lacking in a company that is stuck and can’t seem to make the jump to rapid growth.
Funny thing about my client that called me back in to help out, they listened well in the earlier days. While they’re not quite there yet, all 5 of these competencies are at varying stages of development within the company. The uneasiness they feel is the expectation of what is to come. Of course, it’s never a bad idea to have your work audited to make sure you’re on the right path!
Is this sort of the way you feel from time to time about your business? I recommend downloading the eBook How to Get Out From Under Your Business to find out where you need to focus to put your business on track for rapid growth!