Business

How to grow your start-up into a medium business

Start-ups are launched with the mindset of growing them into a bigger business. You start with the hope of establishing a small business first. But after a time, you’ll want to turn that small business into a medium one. In order to do this, you need to prepare in advance. Having a good growth strategy can help you during the transition. Here are some tips on what you should focus on.

Know how to delegate

Start-up owners often feel like they need to be in charge of everything. When you are running a lean business, you won’t have a lot of resources or employees to take control of. But as soon as your business starts to grow, you need to start delegating. You can’t do everything and your expertise might not be the right fit for all aspects of running a business. It’s essential to pick the right people for the right roles. Let your employees take control and have accountability. This type of delegation is one of the most important things you need to do.

A big part of delegation is to have the right people in place. Your employees are the heart and soul of your business. If you don’t start with a strong HR focus, then you are setting up your business to fail along the way. You need to know the kind of talent you need and want for your business. This isn’t just about hiring the right people when you need them, but also being aware of the talent you’ll need in the future.

Put recruitment and HR management at the heart of your business. You want to make sure you can attract the right people and reward them for helping you grow. You often don’t need to put a lot of money into this if you take advantage of HR software.

Be prepared to make mistakes

You’re not going to be growing your business without making a few mistakes along the way. Sometimes mistakes happen because you weren’t prepared, but sometimes you can’t avoid them. The key is to focus on:

  • Being aware of the worst-case scenarios
  • Having a plan to reduce risks and errors
  • Creating an action plan to recover from the inevitable mistakes

The most common areas where business leaders make mistakes during growth transition include the following:

  • Accounting issues – As your business grows, your accounting needs change. While it might have been easy to handle things in-house during the start-up phase, things like taxation can get a lot trickier as your cash flow increases. It’s very important to at least consider consulting a professional as your business starts growing.
  • Debt issues – Another finance issue that could create problems is debt management. Debt isn’t something to avoid completely as a start-up. But you don’t want to start getting into a lot of debt, especially without a proper, actionable exit strategy.
  • Sales and marketing issues – Start-ups can be too focused on marketing their business. This means neglecting value creation and placing most of your attention on reaching more and more customers.

You need to make sure to consider the worst-case scenarios for the above issues. By understanding what could go wrong, you can not only prepare for that but also reduce the damage.

Support your business with the right technology

The modern business needs to focus on technology. Digitalization is a big thing in the modern world and it’s leveling the playing field for businesses. You don’t want to assume that the right tools would cost a fortune – there are great software systems that help your business grow.

Business management software can make a lot of things easier. Dubai’s start-up scene is a great example of this. The Emirate has put a lot of emphasis on innovation and the start-up scene is booming. One of the city’s biggest wins has been the development of automated and scalable software. You can find HR & payroll software that can fit a start-up but also a bigger business. You don’t need to keep changing your software as you grow – your software systems simply grow with your business!

Investing in the right technology is important from early on. If you set the right digital framework from the get-go, you can adjust better to future challenges. In today’s business world, digitalization is an important part of success. If you’re trying to grow without it, you are going to have a hard time.

Measure your performance and progress

Finally, it’s important to understand what your business is doing. You need to focus on your short-term performance. It can be a great indicator of those immediate victories that are important. You can often figure out quickly if a strategy is working or not. But you also need to have your eye fixed on long-term strategic progress. Make sure you understand your long-term trajectory. You might not be growing steadily but as long as the trend is upward, then things are good.

You should also measure your systems. This means your employee performance, as well as the value you are getting out of your software and technology. You don’t want to use software that isn’t providing you with the benefits, for example. You want to adjust your digital technologies to suit your different needs, too. It’s important you focus on consistency. You don’t want to have a lot of fluctuations in the way your technology or workforce performs. Therefore, you should be on the lookout to recognize when things are going well and have frameworks to correct situations when they start going wrong.

Overall, it boils down to adjusting to changing business environment. Before you launch a start-up, you will create a roadmap and framework for the early months and years. But no matter what, your situation might change and the roadmap becomes obsolete. Therefore, you want to adjust and fix it accordingly as your business grows.

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Ayesha Jafar

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Ayesha Jafar

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