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4 Steps to grow your business

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Startups aren’t the only companies looking to grow. With the dawn of the New Year, business owners reflect on their annual goals, previous accomplishments, and financial projections. It’s during this time that both small businesses and big corporations alike decide to make company growth a top priority. You might feel comfortable and content with your current size, but stagnation is risky and could lead to the proliferation of your competitors. By maintaining consistent growth, your company will stay relevant and retain its customer base. If you need a little help getting your business to the next level, follow the advice listed here. Use this step-by-step guide to help you size to scale and avoid the pitfalls sometimes associated with aggressive growth.

4 Steps to grow your business

1. Identify your assets

Before you start expanding, identify your business’s strengths and weaknesses. You should have a very clear picture of what you do and don’t do; instead of trying to be a Jack-of-all-Trades, hone in on your specialty. Spreading your efforts across a variety of pursuits will make you decent at most things, but not great at any one thing. Expanding outside of your target audience typically isn’t worth a few extra dollars, and you could jeopardize your business’s core assets. While innovation is great and developing new products can be beneficial, you should avoid placing unnecessary pressure on your budget, employees, and company as a whole. How? Play to your strengths during periods of growth. Use bookkeeping services or similar software to pinpoint exactly which goods or services bring you the most revenue.

2. Hire the best

To grow your business, you’ll need the best players sitting at the table – people who aren’t afraid to roll up their sleeves and get difficult work done. Recruit experienced employees with strong skillsets and years spent working in your industry. Follow the best screening and hiring processes, including running background checks on all job applicants. Be sure to use a certified company like ShareAble for Hires that adheres to all federal regulations—or risk facing a costly lawsuit for invasion of privacy. Court and litigation will prove expensive and time-consuming, and can derail your growth, so choose the right third-party company for background reports. Once your company can afford it, consider offering an awesome benefit package to retain good employees.

4 Steps to grow your business

3. Adopt a plan

With a sense of identity and a capable staff, you’re ready to start implementing a plan. Before you start spending big costs on marketing efforts, sending out dozens of emails and phone calls, upgrading your technology and switching leases, formulate a carefully thought out plan tailored to your goals. Instead of attempting to acquire new customers, direct your attention to those you already have. For example, you could set up a referral or customer loyalty program for a cost-effective method for market expansion. Focusing on your business’s established revenue sources will be especially important if you need funding for your growth objectives. In any case, be sure to scope out your top competition to see what they’re offering—and how they’re offering it. Make a decision to innovate and do what they do better, or to align yourself against them by offering something totally unique.

4. Stay focused

Set a number and a date by which you hope to achieve it. Is your growth a three year plan or a six month objective? The time you allot yourself will determine your expansion strategy. Document your projections and monitor your progress; it’s the best way to ensure you stay on track. Consider incentivizing your employees to hit their pre-determined goals with lunches, gift cards, or even the promise of a company vacation. By staying focused on the prize, they’ll remain driven and motivated to succeed. Don’t forget your humanity, though; treating your staff like work horses could lead to poor retention and send you back to the hiring process in step two. Try keeping your employees inspired through an office magazine subscription to Forbes, and propel your way to their 5000 list.

Mark Zuckerberg, founder of Facebook, says “The only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks”. You’re not doing your company any favors by staying complacent, and you should be attempting to innovate and impress your customers. Hedge your risks through careful strategy and implementation to prevent collapsing under ambition. Rely on your expert employees to help you transition, and remember to carefully track your progress while doing so. Growth is attainable, and profits await. Consider your business goals for 2018 and get started today.

About Business Woman Media

Our women don’t want to settle for anything but the best. They understand that success is a journey involving personal growth, savvy optimism and the tenacity to be the best.We believe in pragmatism, having fun, hard-work and sharing inspiration. LinkedIn

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