- Elon Musk, Investor & Entrepreneur
Scaling a business is an important thing to do to ensure that a business is able to grow. Success in business relies heavily on scaling. Scaling a business is a guaranteed asset to growing a business, making it successful, and keeping it successful.
Planning is one of the most important aspects of scaling a business, and it is a classic pencil and paper exercise. To plan, it is important to determine if the business is solid enough to be expanded.
One this is determined, projected growths should be calculated. It is important to consider where the sales are now, and where they are projected to be in the following calendar quarters.
A manager should ask themselves if it would be best to keep selling to current clients, or use the idea of finding new clients to sell to. Sometimes referral programs and discounts can be a great part of planning to scale a business.
If more sales are brought on, or more clients taken on, it is important to have enough employees and product on hand to make this work. An important question a manager should ask is if they have enough capital on hand to hire more help or order more product.
Planning requires a great deal of thought and detail. It is the first important step towards scaling a business for a successful future.
FINDING THE FUNDS
To realistically scale a business, it is very important to have an adequate amount of money on hand, and preferably, some left afterwards. New employees may need to be hired and new equipment brought in according to the plan. As well, a new building or marketplace may need to be purchased.
Another option is a grant. For certain types of businesses, there are grants available to achieve the desired funds quickly. A nice thing about a grant is that it does not need to be repaid. However, it may take some time to find the right grants and apply for them.
Another option on finding funds would be to sell off older equipment or properties no longer needed. Sometimes, auction companies can be a great place to unload surplus items and get money in a hurry.
SALES ARE EVERYTHING
In the business world, sales are everything. It is always important to remember that there should be plenty of profit after bills and payroll are complete. If there is not, something drastically needs to be changed before putting too much time and energy into a struggling business.
It is important to have enough sales leads. Repeat clients are wonderful to have, but a business should also have a way to generate new clients in order to grow to the next milestone.
There should be enough people on the selling platform to do calling, email marketing, and client follow up.
Software is also important. A successful business will deploy the appropriate computer programs to generate invoices, set due dates and reminders, and store all sales history in the system. By viewing sales history at a later date, a manager can better assess how the future of the business will play out.
A good marketing team is a must. If a manager and a few employees are not enough to drive new sales, then a good consideration is to hire a person or team who can complete all of the marketing tasks. It is impossible to get sales if customers and clients are unaware that a business is out there.
It has already been established that businesses require a lot of time, detail, and thought to scale and expand. It may be very beneficial and a time saver to look into outsourcing certain things.
If too much time is spent on payroll, then not enough time will be spent on planning for growth and scaling. Perhaps payroll could be sent out to a dedicated payroll company.
Staffing agencies can help bring in new employees. These companies will preview resumés and help find the best person for the job.
Even things as small as business cards could be outsourced to a printing company.
By outsourcing, valuable time is saved. By saving this time, the manager and employees can focus much more sharply on the tasks at hand to ensure that the business grows.
When outsourcing, it is important to keep the fees in mind. Anytime something is outsourced to another company, that company will require payment for their services. While outsourcing is very nice, it is also important to make sure that it is affordable. If not, it is worth it to compare outsourcing to hiring additional staff to determine which solution is more cost-effective.
SCALING WITH MODERN TECHNOLOGY
Modern technology is an asset to almost every business in existence. When scaling, it is important to decide if upgrading older technology will be worth the expense. Even with an initial investment, technology can help a business to flow much more smoothly.
Advertising and marketing can be automatically done with the proper technology. This could help save money on hiring additional advertising or marketing team members.
Also, accounting is made much more simple as well as keeping track of clients and other revenue streams.
It is important to compare prices on modern technology to determine which could best serve the needs of the scaling business.
There is no right or wrong way to scale a business. However scaling is done will always require time and the proper resources. New employees, technology, or a combination of both can be a helpful factor in scaling a business.
However, it is very important to consider the cost of evolving a business. No business should become bankrupt by scaling.
Finally, every business is unique and their marketing and approach to scaling should always reflect the culture of the company.
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Thought leaders & celebrities share their tactics for success on the Lisnic podcast by Lisa Teh & Nick Bell