Having a fast growing company is the dream of any business owner. Most owners would like to not face any roadblock or failures and have their businesses grow at a consistent rate. However, this never happens in real life and a rapidly growing company can often make it hard for the owner or entrepreneur to maintain the pace.
The breakneck speed at which the company is growing can leave the entrepreneur grabbing at straws and failing to keep everything in control. Fast growth that is not under control and is not managed properly can often lead to a severe drop in quality, stressed out employees and owners, shortage of manpower and resources and unsatisfied customers. A sudden growth spurt can also lead to a huge drop if the growth is not brought under control and sustained. Many small businesses often face a huge surge in demand when famous people or industry leaders suddenly endorse their products. This is a great thing for any company – to be appreciated for the right reasons, but you need to be able to manage this huge surge in demand and be prepared for it.
Here are some tips on managing a fast growing company.
#1 Get a mentor.
For a small business owner, especially a first-time entrepreneur, handling the new-found growth of the company could be daunting. More often than not, you will not know what to do and how you and your company can sustain such a sudden growth spurt. This is why you need experience and wisdom by your side. You need to find a mentor, who is a seasoned businessperson and has managed fast growing companies and who is willing to share advice. There are many leaders out there who are ready to help small business owners handle the success and growth of their companies.
Your mentor will be able to give you business tips, inputs with strategies, and pointers on how to manage your personal and professional life and tips on keeping your employees motivated. Some entrepreneurs and small business owners often have more than one mentor. Having multiple mentors can give you different points of view and new perspectives but you need to be careful. Having too many mentors can also be confusing.
As the company grows rapidly, you will find yourself managing too many things that can be almost impossible to do. This is why you will have to hand over some responsibilities to your employees. This may be a traumatic process and you will not want to hand over so much control to someone else, but this is a necessary process. You need to hand over some critical responsibilities to others so that you can focus on a few and work well. However, you need to know whom to trust. Someone you trust in your personal life may not be the right person to handle business responsibilities too.
#3 Trim the excessive weight from your client list.
Every business has some clients or customers who are just not profitable, are very demanding, and do nothing to improve your company. In the beginning, when you were looking for customers, you probably took on such customers just to have some work. However, when the company is growing rapidly and you are finding it hard to take on and manage all the customers you have, you need to cut out the worst ones. You will definitely have customers who are always negotiating for lower prices, excessive changes, more manpower and resources and more time from your end. You will also have those that are just unpleasant to work with and do not bring a significant amount of business to your company. You will be wise to cut them loose, but you need to be gentle, polite and diplomatic about it.
#4 Consider virtual workers.
A fast growing company needs new employees to handle the growth and extra work. However, you may not have space in your office to house all these extra employees and shifting premises can be inconvenient to your existing employees and hard on your finances. Hiring virtual workers is the perfect solution here. Virtual employees are those who work for your company from any location and often via the Internet. This also allows you to expand to new areas and serve customers far away from your headquarters and hire the best talent from across the country.
#5 Embrace technology.
You know your company is growing very rapidly when it is unable to meet demand even with all employees and systems working overtime. As businesses grow, there are more processes to manage, tasks become harder and there is a greater flow of information. To manage all this, you need to automate some processes with the help of new technology. Upgrade your IT systems and get new applications that will help you manage your business better.
#6 Always have a strategy.
A sudden increase in the growth rate can take you by surprise, but to sustain this growth you need to formulate and implement the right growth strategies. Your growth strategy should identify and define the tools, technology, manpower and business processes required to handle such growth. It should also outline extra infrastructure that is needed and the milestones foreseeable for the future.
#7 Hire the best talent.
In the rush to be able to handle all the added demand, you will be tempted to hire as many new people as possible. But you need to be able to get the best people for your company. You need to make sure that the recruitment process is strict and thorough so only the best people get into your company.