Rapid expansion is the holy grail of a successful business, isn’t it? It means you’ve got the best product or service on the market, offering great value in good time to your customers, right? Leading a business through a period of full-throttle growth has specific challenges. We investigate further as part of our ‘summer of growth’ series of articles.

Growth is exciting but it can also create difficulties, especially in young businesses that don’t have a scalable plan to control it. It’s vital to manage short-term growth whilst also protecting the long-term future of the business. Find out more about the pitfalls of growing too fast in our guest blog this month from Sam Jones at NGI Finance.

So if rapid growth can hamper a business, what measures can you take to overcome the challenges?

  1. Look ahead

As the leader or manager of the growing business, you need to be looking ahead to the time when the madness subsides and work out ‘what comes next?’ Maintaining a long-term view and creating a strategy for the future means you won’t get tripped up by the rapid growth.

  1. Customer focus

Whilst one leader is forward-thinking and planning for the future, another must be totally focussed on maintaining operational standards during the growth period. Streamlined processes, systems, infrastructure, quality and supply chain are vital to keeping your commitments.

  1. An eye on talent

As Sam Jones points out in his useful look at the perils of rapid growth, looking after your people and making sure you recruit wisely is essential to support healthy growth. Why not involve your teams in the recruitment and promotion processes, they have a very clear idea of the type of people that can help the business to grow.

  1. Growth culture

Uncontrolled growth is a type of positive crisis situation. Does your business have clear and meaningful values that underpin all decisions? Strong values are important at times of crisis and your values should be used every day as a reference point for all.

Growth provides huge opportunities, but the leaders must adapt and change to be able to capitalise on it. Leaders must recruit and then trust a team of people to take on the challenges of expansion and allow the business to thrive.

The key point is that a business must be prepared for growth and have the processes in place to manage the change it will bring, for instance, intellectual property and patents, to protect your ideas and competitive edge. Analyse each growth opportunity to determine what preparations must be made and what finance may need to be applied for.

If you’re considering different strategies for growing your business, why not seek the advice of the experts at CRM? With years of looking behind the numbers, the team can provide guidance on all aspects of company growth. Visit www.crmoxford.co.uk or call 01865 379272 for details.

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