If you’re running an established, profitable business, the next thing on your mind might be working out how to take it to the next level.
The way you go about growing your business will be different according to your circumstances, but it’s always important to stop and take stock now and again, to make sure you’re still on track to meet your goals.
Whether you’re in the midst of a rapid growth phase or looking at ways of gradually expanding your business, here are four questions to consider.
Are you growing at the right pace?
When things are going well, it can be easy to overlook the signs of potential problems and assume that the financial side of things is all going smoothly.
But as your business expands, that means more spending, and potentially more debt. That makes it more important than ever to keep track of your cashflow and identify any problem areas before they become unmanageable.
You might already be using a tool like Xero to keep on top of this, but if you’re not, it’s well worth looking into technologies that could help you monitor your business finances. Apps such as Chaser can help you chase invoices efficiently and keep track of cashflow and debt.
Are you maintaining quality?
Owners of startup businesses are usually able to put all their energy into their product or service, because they’re often the one making or supplying it.
If you’re running a bar or cafe, for example, and only have a few members of staff, you’ll be interacting directly with your customers day-to-day. But as you step back and manage the business, taking on staff to do the hands-on work, it might be difficult to maintain the same high standard and personal touch.
Part of dealing with this is making sure you hire the right people, who share your goals for the business’s future, and who you can trust to keep things running.
It’s also important to communicate effectively with your team, and make sure you’re dealing with any tensions or disputes. Investing in HR can make a big difference to this.
Do you have a clear strategy?
There’s more than one way to grow a business, but whatever you do, you need a plan.
The business plan you put together when you first started is likely to have changed since, so it’s a good idea to take the time to go back and update it.
Set specific targets that you want to achieve by growing. This might not just be about selling more – it could be about increasing your profits, reaching new markets, or improving on your products and services.
Are you using technology to your advantage?
Growth is likely to mean more work, but you can minimise the impacts of that additional workload by working smarter – using automation and more efficient ways of working to save yourself time.
Integrating the software you use can save even more time, helping you manage every part of your business in one place. Here’s our list of the top 8 Xero add-ons for running a business.
Talk to us
Our Love My Business service is designed to support you in growing your business, by helping you develop a strategy and keeping track of your progress.
Contact us to talk about your business.