7 Areas to Consider when Leading Your Company Through Rapid Growth
We all want our companies to grow. Typically, in our minds as leaders, growth translates to success and stability. But what if your team is not ready for growth as fast as it happens? Here are some steps you can take to manage your team and proactively anticipate bottlenecks and strategies to navigate through them.
1. How’s your Business Plan?
Do you have the right plan in place? What needs to change in your plan to transition with your rapid growth seamlessly? Do you need the same infrastructure? Who can you reach out to, to help support your growth strategy? Do you have a CEO group that can act as your sounding board? It’s likely that members of this group will have “been there and done that.” They can provide valuable direction and insight based on their experience.
2. Project Management
Do you have the right project management tools? More importantly, is everyone using them? Do these tools keep you or your operations team appraised of bottlenecks? Before you start increasing your workload, make sure that your business operations are running smoothly.
3. Back Up
Do you have back up support that you can integrate quickly if needed? Have you contacted them to ensure that they have bandwidth and interest in supporting you? Can you make commitments to these people in the short term to ensure that their support is in place when you need it? There are search firms that provide fractional executive leadership – it might be a good time to reach out to them to have a safety net in place as you grow.
Have you audited your services by area of business? Are your prices competitive? As you think about growth, how will your costs of operation impact your bottom line? Spend time with your accounting leadership – provide up-to-date audits and reviews of projects and how time is being allocated to these projects. It may be time to increase your pricing to help offset the costs tied to growth. You may also need to look at your current LOC and banking relationship. Attempting to juggle your current expenses while securing additional funding may be difficult. Your banker should understand and support your growth strategy. Make sure to have your funds in place for new employees, equipment, and additional inventory. Additionally, if you are going to need to find a larger workspace, work with a broker or advisor so you have some potential locations scoped out that you could move to.
5. Digital Presence
Have you moved forward with a stronger online and digital presence? Is your website up to date from an SEO perspective? Your online game should be in place. It will ensure that you don’t miss out on any lead generation opportunities, particularly with the new ROI infrastructure and reporting platforms that are available these days. And this type of digital presence can support your new hire strategy. Social media acumen can also help you be prepared to handle rapid growth.
6. Don’t lose sight of your existing customers – they are paying the bills
Are you keeping tabs on their satisfaction with your company’s services and or products? Do you know what would cause them to defect? Incorporate an ongoing means of tracking customer satisfaction. Support that by creating a means to follow up with any deficits in your service areas with the client and with your teams. Do you have incentive programs based on customer retention? Remember, typically, it’s a lot harder to get a new client than to keep a current one.
7. What is your strategy for hiring the right new people for your growing team?
Do you understand your company’s culture? Do you use a culture assessment when hiring to ensure that you have the right fit for your next new team member? Do you have a partnership with a reputable recruiting firm? These strategies can help you cover your bases and prevent lost time and costs with a bad hire at a critical time.
If you’re running a business, you want rapid growth—that means you’re having success and doing things the right way. With rapid growth, however, comes a variety of operational and financial hurdles. To keep your business running smoothly during growth spurts, good leaders must anticipate the growing pains that come with success and have a plan to make a successful transition. Growth is great. Planning for this growth is paramount to achieve success.