Some Definitive Does & Don’ts About Scaling – What We’ve Learned Working With 600 Businesses
So over the past 4-5 years, we’ve worked with over 600 entrepreneurs & businesses, & we’ve had some clients who started with nothing & built a team of 15 offshore staff with us in Philippines, & we’ve had plenty who tried to put in a part-time staff & failed miserably to make it work. So what were differences in these businesses?
1. Defined roles – Those who fail to work with their offshore virtual staff are not clear on the tasks. They know they need help, but don’t have clarity on what tasks to give & how to delegate them, so they hire based on ambiguity rather than plugging staff into a set of defined tasks. The businesses who do well, are those with procedures manuals, training, & clear defined roles.
2. Communication – Those “Solo-Preneurs” who never seem to move beyond themselves have a lack of accountability in their communication. When something goes wrong, they tend to look at the other person & blame. Whilst of course people make mistakes, based on the thousands of incidents we’ve assisted with, 80% of the time it’s poor communication from the “boss” that makes it fall apart. Poor communication can be dealt with, if that party is willing to look at themselves & do better, but when the entrepreneur just points the finger & blames, & is not even willing to look at their part, this will be a massive roadblock to growth.
3. Focus – Businesses that tend to have a narrow focus on both their product/services, as well as their tactics, not changing what they are doing every 5 minutes – tend to scale a lot more easily. As business owners, we are bombarded with so much “noise”. Every second person seems to have the miracle cure for how to grow your business using some new marketing ploy. Those businesses who don’t listen to the noise & focus on what you need to do at the right time of the journey, generally win.
4. Systems & Processes – Businesses of 10+ staff for the most part have better systems & processes in place, procedures manuals etc – This is key to scaling. Was it the systems that got them there, or was it that once you reach a certain size, you need the systems? The latter is definitely true, but those who have systems & procedures at an earlier stage, definitely have an easier time of scaling their team.
There’s obviously a lot more, but these four above are fundamental & if you are in early stages of business, this already hopefully should get you thinking. If you are a small business or entrepreneur looking to scale, we’ve created a cool diagnostic tool which will help you understand just how prepared you are for scaling, & uncover the areas you need to work on. It’s free to do the test, definitely worth your time doing this.