By Aimee Laurence
Scaling up a business can be, generally, one of two things: scary or frustrating. Often, it is the fear of the unknown which leads small businesses to stay as small businesses – they get by on mediocre income and are content with meeting their profit margins at the end of every year, never leaving the same small premises or moving to a new location. While this isn’t desirable, neither is speeding into a sudden growth which your business model can’t handle, leading to financial collapse and instability for you, your family and any assets that you might’ve put on the line alongside your startup. To avoid either of these outcomes – but especially the second, since that is far more disastrous – you need to understand how to expand your startup quickly, without rushing or holding back. How do you do that?
“Behind every great leader is a gaggle of great people who probably told them not to do anything and got ignored,” laughs Louis Byrum, a marketing expert at Australianhelp and Essay Services, “but seriously – you need good people to support you. Pick co-founders who share your visions and won’t cause you problems further down the line, with compatible personalities, and don’t try to ignore potential red flags just because you want to make a friend – address issues before they become issues, and you’ll all be happier ten years later. The people that you work with will help you to expand your business, but, if you choose the wrong people, it’ll all end in tears.”
Don’t Give Up Too Soon
Perseverance is key. While you may think that your business and team are what you need to work on most, sometimes you actually have to look at yourself and think for a minute; can you actually commit to this startup, and support the problems that it might face when sizing up becomes a possibility? If you’re the type of person that runs away at the slightest issue, then maybe expanding your startup just isn’t for you. The safe option isn’t lucrative, but it may be better for those who don’t have the perseverance to weather the storm and come out of the other side better off and a shade more experienced. Those people are the ones which will go far, and be able to expand their startups properly.
Don’t Leap At Money
By which I mean, don’t grab the first investor who propositions you and your startup. “For small startups who haven’t turned a profit yet and have been turned down by many investors that they have approached, an investor coming to them can feel like a blue moon event – special, and not going to happen again for another million years. A once in a lifetime occurrence!” Exclaims Beverly Johnson, a marketing manager at Revieweal and State Of Writing. “But it really won’t be. Desperation is a terrible thing – to be able to scale up properly, you need the right investors, not just the first bloke who wanders along and waves some cash in your face. You need someone with a passion for your industry, experience that you can use and the right amount of money, for the right deal. Don’t be afraid to turn down the wrong investors – they turn down the wrong companies all the time!”
In today’s modern age, it is nearly impossible to have a business and not take it online in some form or other, and the best way to advertise online currently is by using social media. Create a business account and find your audience, to gain customers. Customers will then use your startup, generating profit for you. Create giveaways and shoutouts, with the stipulations being to share your account with the customers’ friends. More customers will appear, trusting you because of a recommendation from a friend, and generate more profit. This will allow you to scale up due to a naturally increasing audience, and, while it isn’t guaranteed to work overnight, it will definitely show you results at some point in the near future.
As a small start-up, you have one major advantage that bigger companies often don’t have the resources to fix: customer service. Their huge audiences mean that they don’t have enough people to answer all the phones and emails, so customers often end up getting frustrated by waiting for an hour to talk to a robot, who turns out to not even be helpful. Make sure your startup’s customer service is brilliant. Train your staff members, and ensure that they always respond to customers with a friendly face/voice and open mind to their issues. Your human touch will increase customers’ trust and respect for your startup, meaning that expansion will become easier with more loyal customers providing you with repeat business.
Your startup won’t always be working in the midst of sunshine and rainbows. Sometimes, funding will be low, and morale will follow. Without a passionate leader, employees will flee the sinking ship, seeking better paying and more consistent jobs, to support them and their families. Even if you can make it through the rain, you won’t get anywhere on the other side without your staff. So drive them forwards, even in times of plenty, with purpose and goals that your company will achieve. Celebrate milestones, and the work will begin to flow more regularly, as people ease into your startup’s lifestyle. Bad patches will be bad patches, and your employees will stay with you until your startup starts to turn it around, because they believe in you and your mission. Without purpose, they will leave, but with purpose, they will become like family.
Above all, do not be hasty. Hastiness makes a broken startup, all out of funds and abandoned by employees. Don’t jump at offers from strangers who don’t have interest or experience in your industry, and don’t jump at your own mind telling you to buy, buy, buy for ‘expansions’ when your startup hasn’t even turned a profit yet. Scaling is a delicate process, which can be ruined by unruly leaders who want the world on a plate, and they want it now. Be patient, and keep your staff patient by inspiring them, so that they believe in your end-goal just as much as you do. That is the true secret to rapidly expanding your startup.
Aimee Laurence, who educates at Online Assignment Help as well as Assignment Writers, loves sharing her experience with the world of business and investment with her audience. She contributes to many blogs, such as the OXEssays.com blog, and motivates everyone who reads her articles.