After successfully pulling your startup company from the bootstraps and creating a business model that actually works, the next big target you can train your sights on is scaling up.
Be warned, though, that many startups fail, not during the initial launch, but when they try to scale up too early, or without making sure that everything is ready for this monumental step.
To avoid the pitfalls of losing everything while trying to scale up your company, follow this step by step guide before you take the leap:
1. Get your leaders in place
It’s a common misconception that it’s impossible to stage a scale-up without hiring more people. After all, you would need more managers, department heads, and foot-soldier employees, right?
Well, sure, once the scale-up translates to better sales and more clients, you can add more people, but it doesn’t have to happen right away.
For now, you can simply focus on increasing the productivity of your current team. In fact, it might do your business better if you allocate resources to training the leaders you already have and making sure that they are comfortable enough to step up as self-starters in your scale-up plans. Remember that according to research, comfort translates to better productivity at work.
Besides, bringing in new people who have little to no idea how your business model works might not be the best idea when you’re scaling up. Better rely first on people who can already add actual value to your expansion plans.
2. Polish your business model
A working business model is imperative for any company hoping to scale up, but it’s not enough that you have a proven-effective business model that made your startup succeed in the first place.
You have to be 100% sure that the business model is actually scalable, in that you can repeat its success even if you’ll be working on a different location, and perhaps even a different product or service line.
3. Equip yourself with relevant technology
Once you have a scalable business model prepared, the next step should be reinforcing your company’s technology and connectivity tools.
From storage solutions to cloud-based applications for the seamless sharing of files and data, you have to be prepared to invest in tools that will keep your systems running effectively and efficiently.
Specifically, look at JDE Software and other attached tools that can automate certain parts of your business processes for you. Keep in mind the reason you’re scaling up: you are hoping to attract greater demand for your business.
If you do things right, you will see a sudden spike in client demand, so you have to be equipped with the right technology to meet those.
4. Secure funding
Achieving all these ambitious goals will be next to impossible without a huge financial investment. There are a lot of business financing options you can explore, but first, prepare an exhaustive budget plan and map out everything you’ll be spending on as you embark on your expansion plans.
Include one-off expenses and recurring ones alike, and make sure you have enough funding to cover all of these. Be realistic about your projections, including that for ROI, so you can check if your cash inflow will be enough to sustain your business and expansion plans moving forward.
5. Prepare new prospects lists
Finally, bear in mind that all these steps, investments, and hard work will have been for nothing if, at the end of the day, you fail to attract more clients or customers. For instance, you can’t insist on opening a new store in a remote location without having a substantial prospect list in the same area.
Your entire marketing strategy is entirely hinged on your target client base, so without that…then why are you even thinking about scaling up?
If you’ have all of these steps locked and loaded, then you can definitely say you’re ready to move things forward with your startup company. Once you’ve put in all the hours and have committed all you have for this endeavor, the only thing left to do is cross your fingers and hope everything goes well according to (this) plan.