You may have started from a small kiosk in a popular mall or a stall at the corner of the street or even a 2 room store in the suburbs, but the idea of establishing and growing into something big and famous is what lurks in the mind of all entrepreneurs.
Though it takes much time to start off with something new and leave the old order of a 9-5 job behind, it takes even more time to gradually market your business, appoint employees, build a good customer base that is regular and consistent and adds up to some more customers.
Basically it takes time to establish a small set-up and its popularity to spread far and wide.
However, once you are successful in proving to people what your company is all about, you need to think on growing your venture.
Coming to this, many people get panicky as to how they will manage different branches, set up bigger stores with more facilities and amendments to cater to all the needs of their clients while even handling their day-to-day workload.
Try not to expand your start-up when you are busy in handling some important projects for the business or about to launch a new product or service for the clients.
Choosing which way to grow your business is also an important decision. If you want to grow organically and sell your current products to newer and unexplored markets or sell new products to existing customers or you plan a rapid growth by buying other similar businesses, is the first move in the decision, just as soon as you think of growing your company.
It is always up to you to figure out and decide whether or not you should run the business as it is or make plans for its expansion, keeping in mind the merits and demerits of growing a business venture.
Before expanding your business, you must be sure enough that this is a good idea and a good time to pursue this initiative.
While the merits of growing your business entail going for greater discounts as bulk buys become common and suppliers would ensure that the demand meets supply.
Bigger businesses ensure more security, and greater sale of products and services as well as increased chances of earning more profit, depending on the profit margin for them.
However, there is also the other side of business expansion. It takes much more time to manage larger businesses and lot more money obviously. Hiring people and delegating them particular work in different branches thereby losing your direct control over the entire business as and when it starts growing. Also providing one-on-one or face-to-face service to your customers becomes a hassle and may not be feasible all the time; you may have to recruit people who can particularly doing client servicing for your company. Alternatively, you can also provide training and development lessons to your existing employees so that they are better able to handle clients.
Taking loans to buy equipment and newer lands will also ensue and you may have to manage selling greater number of products which will again make you spend more cash on the making costs of the products. So you should be ready to deal with cash-flow problems before you plan on growing your business.
Before expanding your business, you will need to understand what your company is best at. You would have to map out the most workable aspects where your business can excel, whether it is product marketing, finances, understanding and exploring markets or client servicing.
To chalk out the performance levels of your business, you can perform a SWOT (Strength, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis and understand the strengths and opportunities your company possesses and can be beware of the weaknesses and threats your company might face at a given point of time and plan your business growth accordingly.
Also, make sure you follow the below given pointers to know if this is a good time to grow your business:
You have a regular, consistent set of customers
When your company is no more a store for certain products and services and it has already grown into a brand where the awareness level among your customers and other people about your brand is growing, you know that you are ready to expand. Businesses spread through word of mouth most easily and rapidly. When you know this is happening, and you can see a future for your business, it is time to grow.
You can easily handle the extra workload
You have to be personally ready in all respects to help your business prosper because even after you start growing as a company, things will take time to come to a normal pace. Your health, family, lifestyle all should support your business growth.
Make sure the right kinds of employees are working for you
Not only having an efficient co-founder whose needs and thoughts are compatible with you, but choosing the right qualified and skilled staff who can relate to the work they do is very important. Some of them might needed to be posted in different branches once your business grows, so plan all of this in advance.
Working on the above points and ensuring if you are already meeting the goals that you had earlier established while starting off can help you understand that this is the right time to grow.
All the best for a better business future!