I’m watching it happen again. One of my favorite vendors is struggling because of scaling issues. They provide great service. They provide a great service to me, which is why I’ve recommended them multiple times to other people. But now I’ve watched them get bigger and because they have grown and haven’t adjusted their business model, they’re struggling. They’re having difficulty keeping up with all the orders and servicing myself and the new clients.
I hate to see this happen. There’s a truism in business. If you’re not prepared to scale, you’re going to eventually hit a problem because if people like your quality and they like your service, they’re going to refer you and then you’re going to be unable to grow.
You’re either going to have to say no to customers or you’re going to have to get to a situation where you’re going to disappoint your new or existing customers. I, unfortunately, can no longer refer the service because they have not provided me quality service since their growth and now they’ll repeat the cycle undoubtedly. Other of their customers will stop referring them, their business will stop growing and they’ll struggle again. And as they scale down and as they lose customers, they’ll be able to provide high-quality service again and they’ll please another batch of customers and they’ll go through a growth phase until they can’t anymore.
You see in business, it’s critical to scale. We have to grow with our operations. If we’re not growing, we’re dying and if we’re doing the things right, growth is going to come to us and we have to be ready for it or else we’re going to fall in this vicious trap of not doing great service and losing our customers and going back and forth.
So how do we do this? How do we prepare? Well, part of it’s what we talked about. It’s using effective delegation, as discussed in other blogs, it’s having systems and processes, and it’s getting the owners and the others in the company focused on what they’re great at rather than just doing every task that comes in the door. So it’s really about having that business focus and that business understanding no matter who you are and what you’re doing and what you’re doing well.
It’s a shame to have a business that’s so great that you grow but then you lose your customers. It’s really a terrible paradox, so be prepared. Be ready for growth. Have plans in place. Map out your next direction. Figure out how you’ll deal with that growth when it happens so that you have plans in place and you don’t end up hurting yourself.
What’s been your experience with growth? Have you struggled with it? Are you prepared for a growth cycle? Could you take an increase in your operations of doubling in size next year? What would you do? Join us in the comments below and let us know the preparations you’re making for growth.
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This posting is intended to be a tool to familiarize readers with some of the issues discussed herein. This is not meant to be a comprehensive discussion and additional details should be discussed with your attorneys, accountants, consultants, bankers and other business planners who can provide advice for your circumstances. Each case is unique. Past results do not guarantee future outcomes. This article should not be treated as legal advice to any person or entity. Freeimages.com/photographer Kaliyoda.
About the Author
R. Shawn McBride is the Chief Innovation Officer at McBride For Business, LLC. His signature keynote, The 3 Laws of Empowerment, gives audiences an entertaining look at how they can prepare, plan and protect themselves. You can email R. Shawn McBride or (214) 418-0258.