A while ago, your business was a start-up. But now it’s a scale-up. How do you know? Well, if you’re turning away clients or customers because you don’t have the capacity, it could be time to scale up your business so that you can meet demand. And if you’re already reaching your goals easily, scaling up will give you greater profits as well as a greater challenge.
To ensure a seamless scale-up, it’s a good idea to write a business growth plan. In this blog, we look at how to write an effective business growth plan and what information you should include.
Decide how far you want to take the business during this phase
Theoretically, the sky is the limit when it comes to business growth. However, when you’re planning, it’s much easier, smarter and more effective to pin down how far you want to take the business over the next period, and how you’re going to do it. This will help you to stay focused, and means you only say yes to business that is going to take you in your planned direction.
Choose your growth indicators carefully
It’s also a good idea to decide how you’re going to measure the business growth. Scaling up your business may well require investment, such as new team members and new equipment, which will affect your overall figures. Remember to break your figures down. Look at the increase in business, but also calculate how much it will cost to get you there. Consider whether those sums add up.
You might also like to consider whether you’re only going to measure growth in financial terms, or include other factors too. Depending on your business, you might like to include customer satisfaction or improved turnaround times. Non-financial indicators help you identify strengths and weaknesses, and develop strategies for the future.
Identify how to move your business forward, and what you need to achieve it
Once you’ve decided how far to take your business in the next year, it’s time to think about how you’re going to do it. You might choose to launch a new product or service to appeal to a new market. Alternatively, you might develop what you already offer in order to retain existing customers and upsell to them. You might keep doing exactly what you do now, only in more locations. We chose to franchise Get Ahead and it proved to be the right move for our business.
Whatever approach you choose, you’ll have to research your additional direction, market it, produce it and sell it. You might even need to consider rebranding, or using different channels to connect with a different type of client.
Be ready to react
Depending on the sort of business you have, external factors might affect your business growth. For example, all businesses learned a lot from the coronavirus pandemic. While covid brought some businesses to their knees, it also created opportunities for others.
If you operate internationally, for instance, your work could be affected by exchange rates. If you have a complex supply chain, your products and prices could be affected by market fluctuations.
Difficult situations can create new opportunities too. We all know that Zoom grew enormously during the pandemic, but did you know that Marks and Spencer helped develop the UK’s World War II rationing strategy? Unexpected need for your product, service or expertise could help your business grow.
Savvy business owners incorporate flexibility into their business growth plans, to ensure they are ready to react to changing situations.
Business development for scale-up businesses
We love helping businesses make the move from start-up to scale-up. To find out more about how we can help you grow your business, contact your local regional director.