GROW OR DISAPPEAR

Business must consistently grow if it is able to sustain itself over the longer term. Inflation will eat away at your profits if your sales remain stagnant as any stock you purchase will gradually increase in price, in time, to further reduce your profits. Where your turnover remains stationary, you will need to devise new strategies to boost your business to fight its way into the future.

To push your business forward, you will be required to assess your marketing strategy and expenditure to find ways to increase your turnover and profit levels to boost the returns on your investment.

There are also the psychological factors to take into account when you assess how your business is going to grow. It is very important that you consider the future of your business; otherwise it may gradually slow down and die.

Many people are struck with fear when they start running a business because they wonder that they might stumble, which may bring dangerous anxieties when they consider any sort of failure.

Individuals need to change their habits and their mind-set. This is not a time for guessing or wishing. You must know your business and your industry so well that you can trust your instincts and push forwards.

Nevertheless, the right type of growth for your business needs to be carefully planned as bigger and better can also cause your business to collapse if you have not prepared for too much growth, too soon. You may outstrip your own personal capacity and be unable to manage your working processes, quality and financial controls.

There are many examples, like Starbucks and Toyota, who have grown too quickly which resulted in a loss of control of their core business and in the car manufacturer’s example, in too many recalls for problems with their models.

Growth in your business means changing your business and it is better that you understand the limits to the individual and your business when you consider the ability to process change for the benefit of all. Successful growth must be sustainable and that will be achieved by combining the best leadership with the finest culture and first-class processes.

Tough decisions may need to be taken for business growth and this will affect your management team, your employees as well as your customers. The evolution of this cycle is continuous which is why you will plan for any changes in the future, however difficult they are.

A high level of focus and discipline is required for your business to continue to grow, instead of wilting and dying away. There must be sufficient cash flow within your business to be able to cope with the levels of growth that are anticipated. You will be setting a list of priorities that must be dealt with as your business continues to grow. This will mean thinking ahead about the education and skills that will be required in the future.

You can minimise your problems by planning ahead and preparing for all eventualities. You can never know exactly how much your business will grow as you will be consistently re-evaluating all of your marketing and strategies, but without preparation, the future of your business may look bleak. This is good news because it keeps you on your toes and helps you think about how you can provide better service to your customers and continue to grow.
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Samuel Rosenberg is the founder and CEO of Axcel Finance Ltd., the leading regional microfinance institution. Share your thoughts and email your questions to srosenberg@axcelfinance.com

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