What does it mean to scale a business? A synonym for scaling is positioning your organization for growth. However, scaling a business is not the same as growth. When you scale a business, you increase your revenue at a greater rate than you take on new costs. That sounds nice, but it’s essential to discern the right timing for scaling your business. In order to scale, you must steward your current responsibilities first. [Click here for more on how to do that.]
In this blog post, you’ll learn three tips for how to scale a business. Be sure to check out the corresponding episode on The WealthBuilders Podcast!
How to Scale Your Business
1. Be Ready to Change Your Company Culture
Growth often requires a significant change in culture. Company culture refers to the behaviors and attitudes of its employees. When you scale your business, you will stretch people to do more than they are used to doing. They will most likely move from a job with a preexisting system in place to something new. This can create stress and insecurity.
So, after you decide to scale, you need to communicate with your team clearly. After all, they will be the ones who do many of the required activities for growth! The priorities you have for each job description will shift, and you need to have a way to measure their new goals.
Depending on the size of your organization, you may not be directly involved in every activity. However, your team members are! Let your employees take some ownership in developing new systems for their roles and responsibilities. Receiving their input as you create new systems allows you to implement critical information you’d otherwise miss.
2. Always Think in Systems
A system is an organized or coordinated method or procedure. The total of all the systems in any given business make up its operations. So, well-designed and well-executed systems are crucial for efficient operations!
Systems thinking starts with documenting your organization’s activities. When you consider how to scale your business, you will realize the importance of writing everything down. Without clear documentation, it’s difficult to understand what’s happening within the organization! When you scale, you’re going to need more than mental notes.
After you document what you’re already doing, you will have a better grasp of what systems you need to create in order to scale. That brings us to the last step—preparing for growth.
3. Prepare for the Growth
This step is where scaling your business really comes into play. Now that you know what systems are operative in your organization, you are equipped to answer the following critical question: Will our business model work as we grow? For example, if you currently ship 50 products a day, will your current system still work with 100 orders a day?
If the answer is no, scaling requires an adjustment of current systems to accommodate future growth. Some examples include hiring more employees, renting or buying another space, or adjusting your business systems.
The time to start thinking about scaling is not when you receive the 50 orders; it’s when you’re only receiving 2-3 orders per day. Think: is your organization ready to receive the growth you pray for?
In my real estate business, I have quickly learned that I’m inefficient in many things. When we are inefficient, we are not doing a great job of being good stewards. So, because our time is valuable, we always look for ways to improve!
Although we want to get to the point where we’re managing five properties at a time, we couldn’t handle that now. So, I’ve begun to ask myself how to systemize certain things, from putting up curtain rods to handling electrical work. I also do my accounting with pen and paper, but it’s time to change.
I hope this blog has helped you develop a plan for how to scale your business! Remember, the first thing you have to do is decide to scale. Then, you communicate with your team. Finally, you evaluate your business activities and systemize them in a way that positions your organization for growth. Be sure to check out this episode on the WealthBuilders Podcast tomorrow, and please comment any questions you may have!