Growth is the logical foundation on which every company especially a startup is conceived.
Customers need to be engaged without a break… competition needs to be outsmarted… new markets need to be explored. Those companies that fail to convert every opportunity to scale up that comes by, ultimately fail. It’s a bit of a thumb rule.
The biggest stumbling block for teams looking to go bigger, of course, is to figure out when exactly. Identify that golden moment to the closest degree of accuracy. When is it ok to finally step out of the comfort zone and take things to the next level?
It’s a growth dilemma almost every organization has to face at some point. Here are a few ways to trump it. The first thing to ensure is that your business is ‘fulfilled’ at the current state and stage. That means your value chain is running at maximum efficiency, and that you have optimized every possible point across it.
Your customers are happy (because you are offering them the same value – if not more – as during the honeymoon period of launch). You are attracting new buyers without spending too much on advertising (In fact, you are getting great word of mouth (the best form of advertising). Your sales cycles are short (indeed, your sales team needs beefing up). You are turning down potential business (because you don’t have the bandwidth). You are surpassing targets with relative ease.
The next thing to consider is whether your current model will be equally effective when implemented on a bigger scale. Sure, the machine’s purring great now, but can it continue to after you have spread your wings – or will it be spread out too thin? The cost of acquiring new customers must be low (in other words, your idea must be great enough for your customers to want ‘in’ without significant promo budgets).
You must have all the necessary infrastructure in place (to cope up with a bigger floodgate of demand – and that includes a scalable team). Perhaps most critically, you ought to have a great cash flow structure in place. What got you here, won’t get you there. Last but not least, therefore, your decision to jump will depend squarely on your ‘product-market fit’ – not today, but in the future.
Is your disruption ‘tomorrow proof’ (or, at the very least, does it take into account the variables that will be a part of the equation tomorrow)? How confident are you that your product or service will be in tune with oncoming trends? How firmly do you have your finger on the changing customer’s pulse?
It’s not easy to figure out the right moment to ratchet things up. Not least because the decision to scale and grow faster depends on several factors. Above all, you’ll need to be 100% clear on your motive: Why do you want to scale? Is it for more profits? To please stakeholders? To just maintain the current momentum?
There are no easy answers, of course, to the ‘growth moment’ dilemma. Given the rest of the picture is hunky dory, there is only one thing that you really need to know. Do you ‘feel right’ taking the plunge? If you do, go for it.
Because that ‘go’ from inside, is how most of the biggies out there became big.
DKODING the ‘Growth Dilemma’.
The right moment to scale often comes disguised as no more than a mildly favourable wind. Sometimes, you may not even have that advantage. Which is why there’s no perfect moment to grow. Just the perfect desire, to take advantage of the hand we’ve been dealt with by destiny.