Growth is at the heart of every sound business strategy but growing too fast can come with problems. We’ll highlight some of the red flags to look out for and tips for staying on track with your business growth.
You build your business and your reputation by providing quality products and excellent customer service. Too many orders could lead you to cut corners and disappoint your customers. The key is to make it easy for them to complain then pay close attention to what they’re saying. That way you’ll be able to pinpoint where things are going wrong and act quickly to put them right.
Rapid business expansion can overload your employees with more work than they can handle. They could feel under pressure to work longer and longer hours and, and as a result, their performance and your business could suffer. They might even start to look for work elsewhere.
If you recognise the signs, find a way to show your staff they’re appreciated and reassure them that things will soon change. This will help to keep them onside while you put a more controlled growth strategy in place, factoring in time to recruit and train enough people to keep pace with an increasing workload.
You’re feeling the pressure
If your staff are under pressure, it’s likely that you are too. Entrepreneurs are famous for putting in long hours but there’s little to be gained by pushing yourself so hard you lose sight of the overall picture and burn out.
You may have started out doing everything yourself but, as your business grows, it’s important to delegate tasks and duties. This will help take the pressure off you, allowing you to better stay on top of things.
Cash flow problems
When you’re throwing all of your energy into growing a business it’s easy to lose touch with day-to-day cash management.
If you’re overlooking late payments, you could find yourself struggling to pay your own bills. Rapid growth also makes it harder to keep a tight rein on your expenditure. When orders are piling up, it’s easy to justify extra costs, or just to lose track of how much you’re spending.
An efficient banking set-up is crucial. For example, now that NAB is working in partnership with accounting packages such as Xero and MYOB, it’s easier than ever for you to track expenses, view bank balances, send out invoices, approve payments securely and receive alerts as soon as payments land in your account. You can simply link the software to any NAB transaction or other business account.
Get advice to help manage business growth
If you feel your business is growing too quickly and starting to run away from you it could help to reach out to other business owners for advice and mentorship. There are state-based business advisory groups and the Small Business Mentoring Service, opens in new window (SBMS) provides low-cost business mentoring across Australia.
A good accountant will also help you to stay on track and develop strategies for managing change.
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The information contained in this article is intended to be of a general nature only. It has been prepared without taking into account any person’s objectives, financial situation or needs. Before acting on this information, NAB recommends that you consider whether it is appropriate for your circumstances. NAB recommends that you seek independent legal, financial and taxation advice before acting on any information in this article.