Scaling Your Startup Safely

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You're living the dream. You’ve created a startup that’s turning into a scale-up. People love what you’re doing and want your company to flourish but the road to glory is littered with cautionary tales of companies who became too big for their bootstraps. So how do you grow at speed without losing control? Keep these tips in mind and you’ll make the growing less painful.

Know who’s the your boss

When a company grows quickly new hires are starting all the time. As companies are commonly moving towards more flexible working environments, the absence of a clear company structure and job descriptions has become a common pitfall. Who is to perform what tasks? Who signs off on final versions? Who’s in charge of purchasing what? It’s not enough for everyone to know their own responsibilities -  they need to know exactly who to contact on other teams to promote lateral working. Not making company roles clear to everyone within can cause work to stall or worse yet —  run around in circles.

Growth and demand: balance the scales

The fact that your business is doing well enough to grow is worthy of excitement but remember it's tempting at this stage to bite off more than you can chew. Evaluate every big opportunity carefully. Does it really contribute to your strategic goals? Or does it just sound good on paper? If it's going to make a big difference consider the impact on other critical projects and whether you have the right resources in place. Making sure you have enough time and manpower to withstand the increased workload while not letting your head count get out of control can be a tricky balance. Which leads us to...

Maintain the right metrics

Knowing the numbers behind your business is key to knowing its health. Unless you have an eye on the numbers you won’t truly know how well your business is doing and which direction it should be going. Obsessively tracking key metrics in your finances, customer relations and overall performance will keep you well informed at all times - which means you'll be better equipped to make the tough decisions.

Communication is key

This applies to both communication internally with employees and externally with customers. Weekly newsletters or meetings, customer surveys or job performance reviews, however you want to do it make sure everyone is in the loop.  At Geniac one of our communication goals is to never ask a customer for the same information twice. This lets our customers know that their time is important to us. Set the right communication goals for your business - the clearer things are, the easier they get.

 

by Katherine Green on June 13, 2016

Topics: startups, scaleup, small business, business services, tips

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