There comes a certain point in every entrepreneur’s career when they have to take a big leap of faith. It’s called scaling up, and it will make or break your business. There are several stages of scaling up on the startup journey. The first comes when you step out from your bedroom office, and move into a real office. The next step is securing some VC funding. Without these milestones of forward movement, your business will remain stagnant. So, how exactly do you take these big, scary steps to the next level?
The first step is scaling up in your mind. If you can’t imagine your business rubbing shoulders with the giants of industry, it won’t happen. It’s time to expand your horizons, set bigger goals, and scale up your dreams. When you think positively, the next step seems much more realistic and achievement. It’s the hardest part for any business owner, but start thinking one step ahead. Set goals and targets that are ambitious and audacious.
Hire experienced team members
Before you start thinking about expanding your premises or boosting your marketing, hire some experts. More specifically, hire people who have been through the expansion phase before. You need a team that has expert knowledge in guiding firms through a scale up process. They know the potential pitfalls, and they’ll help you avoid the biggest mistakes. They’ll also have the contacts and resources to make the transition as smooth as possible. The best investment you’ll make is in experience and talent.
Make sure the demand is big enough
Again, before you pour money into the expansion, make sure the demand is there. I always tell businesses to expand when they are at bursting point. When you have more orders than you can handle or more client queries than you can respond to. When the demand is huge, it’s time to scale up. Never scale up, and then try to find more demand. It won’t happen. Make sure your groundwork and foundations are as strong as possible before you scale up.
Expand your premises
If you’re confident in your foundations, you can begin to start the expansion process. It all starts with larger premises. Perhaps it’s your first ever office space, or upgrading to a larger premises. For an e commerce company, you might think about investing in metal buildings for warehouse storage. You might consider opening a new factory or setting up shop in a new city. Make the right decision for you and your business. The trick is stepping up, but still giving yourself room to expand further.
Finally, increase your marketing spend
The very last point on the list is boosting your marketing. You can only do this when all the other aspects are taken care of. In other words, don’t boost your marketing before you can handle the flood of new customers. Lay the groundwork, grow slowly, then push money into more promotion. It’s a simple formula.
Scaling up is a precise issue of timing. Too early, and you’ll stretch yourself too thin. Too late, and you’ll miss the boat. Best of luck, and please let us know if you have further questions.