One of the most important phenomenons lost on leaders in pursuit of sustainable growth is that in this age of uncertainty and complexity where the barriers of entry for competitors are lowered constantly, every advantage is assailable. The only real advantage is not long term plans but speed and agility.
Here are three steps to prepare for growth.
- Set attainable business growth goals. Start your expansion plans specifically.
- Plan for unsustainable small-business growth. Expect competition from all quarters. In my experience as a consultant I have discovered business owners continue to follow scripts written prior to the Great Recession where competitors played by rules.
- Expect every advantage is unsustainable.
- Consider the operations of your company. “Can you operationally sustain this rate of growth with your current infrastructure, suppliers, human capital, management bandwidth and such?”
- Be nimble.
- Set short term goals.
- Do you have access to investment capital at a reasonable cost, if needed, for new infrastructure? Do you have access to additional supplier and/or human capital capacity at historical rates, if needed?
- What are the potential sources for this incremental capacity and what is your plan for securing new suppliers or people
- Revise your business expansion plan as you progress. Planning for sustainable growth may require some recalculation.
With the pace of uncertainty accelerating you will most certainly need to address your plan. In fact I strongly suggest writing your plans in pencil. There is no such thing as a smooth transition. You have to stay small and fast.
Adapted from 3 Ways To Prepare For Business Growth | OPEN Forum.
Jim Woods is a strategic advisor, consultant, business coach, and president of Leadership Matters Institute and InnoThink Group. He consults and speaks to business leaders worldwide to help them develop leadership skills that achieve competitive advantage.
Read more: www.innothinkgroup.com