Is growth always a good thing in business? People starting out with a new business are likely to think so. But it’s important that you realize how much growth can be both a blessing and a curse. Growth is a sign of great success, of course. You’ve got enough customer loyalty that they’re coming back and recommending you to people they know. You’ve got businesses wanting to work with you. You’ve made a name for yourself online and on the streets.
But if you’re not prepared for growth, then you can find yourself consumed by your own success. And no, I’m not talking about the sort of self-destructive growth that one associates with rock stars. (You know what I’m talking about: the drugs, losing friends, making an appalling second album, that sort of thing.) I’m talking about your very infrastructure. If you don’t have what you need to handle the demand, then you could see your business in serious trouble.
So how do you actually handle growth? Here’s an article about the actions you need to start thinking about.
Keep an eye on things
Have you been tracking your expenses? Keeping a budget? Working on an inventory? Kept up to date with the management of employees and work hours? A lot of businesses make it quite far without paying much attention to those things, considering how small they are. And that’s fine. But these things are about to expand. If you don’t start keeping track of everything soon, things are going to get out of control very fast.
Increase your payment options
When you get more customers, you get faced with more payment options. A lot of stores start off just dealing in cash. But pretty soon you’re going to get people coming in who only have basic credit cards. Then you’ll have people who want to pay with American Express. Perhaps some will want to hand you a check. Contactless payment cards are on the rise now, too. And what about payments from mobile phones? These are all things worth consider. Start off with a credit card terminal and expand from there.
Review your cash
So how much money do you have to hand? Because if your business is expanding then it’s going to cost you. With any luck, the expansion will be gradual. But let’s say you’ve become an overnight sensation. What if Kanye West wandered into your store and Tweeted about how you sell the best (whatever it is you’re selling)? The rate at which demand will rise is going to be fast. This can be dangerous. The costs that come with this will include the need for more staff and the need for more stock. You may even need to consider getting a small business loan for your expansion.
Don’t lose your personality in the process
This is important. Small businesses tend to have more warmth than the big businesses. They respond faster on social media and can afford to be more humorous. Don’t lose that part of your business, because it’s likely that it helped you get to where you are today.