Once your business has started generating consistent revenues with a regular intake of new customers, you can safely assume that you have moved into the Stability Phase from the Start-up Phase. With the teething problems over and a steady cash flow achieved, it's time to start focussing on expanding the business.
The growth phase is a completely different ballgame altogether. You will need to re-strategize, set up new targets, and find a solution to completely different types of challenges. All this requires that you focus on managing other complexities, while the routine issues are addressed without your intervention. So, you will have to crystallize the processes that have evolved, start delegating the routine as well as some not-so-routine activities and look for automating wherever possible.
A bit of detail about each of the above should give you a better idea about how to go about it.
Start by documenting all the best practices and experiences. With an “Inspect and Adapt” the processes can be improved over time making them more and more efficient. A formal process provides consistency in outcomes, and improves the quality and efficiency of work while also helping in delegating seamlessly, thereby making the upper management dispensable.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines delegation as “The act of empowering to act for another.” Empowering your managers to exercise autonomy and trusting them to deliver, by making them aware of the big picture is a key to successful delegation.
You need to identify the right set of people who can be your torch-bearers. If not available within the organisation, you can go for hiring the right kind of talent. Once you have finalised the next in-line managers for your team, you need to provide them the training, be a guide and mentor to them, and finally, hand them over the responsibility.
Investing in good technology and/or platforms will greatly help in managing the tasks while freeing up time. When you were a small organisation with a limited number of employees and departments, you didn’t feel the need for technology and MS Excel was good enough for most of purposes. However, as you grow, good software and formal processes will be needed for systematic growth.
Now, more and more data from HR, Operations, Sales, etc needs to be analysed and inferred from. You might want to analyse your products – the fastest moving or most profitable ones or most costly ones and so on. You will also want to analyse the client feedback; both good and bad or analyse the customers added/lost with most probable reasons for the outcome. You might want to analyse your existing pipeline and try to predict the positive ones so that the time and energy can be allocated proportionately.
All of these necessitate the investment in automating the systems which can give accurate results in this growth phase.
In the start-up phase, everything is dependent on employees. They are the ones wearing different hats at the same time, working with a lot of autonomy albeit under tremendous pressure. As the organisation moves into stability and subsequently into growth phase the employee roles and expectations will also change. Managing the employees’ expectations while not impacting the attrition rate is crucial for any start-up to grow. It’s the people in the organisation who make it a great place to work. People who join a start-up at the early stages and are part of its growth have the culture of the organisation imbibed in them, while also carrying crucial insights into the overall customer experience.
As things change in the organisation you ought to take your employees into confidence making them aware of what’s expected of them now. With more checks & balances, rules & policies coming into play, it’s important to help them adapt to the changes. You have to take them along, by your side to help them settle in the changing environment.
Also, you need to acquire fresh talent. With increase in headcount, a formal HR department and an objective performance evaluation system will be required. While a structured management process might not be necessary in the start-up phase, you will need one in the growth phase. This is mandatory to identify top performers, assigning the right tasks to the right talent, and deciding on providing the roles and responsibilities. A system to reward the top performers, thereby encouraging good performance has to be built. Employees are our first line of customers and a feedback mechanism for employees to suggest improvements or air their grievances will result in early course correction and improve the morale of the people resulting in improved productivity.
The growth phase comes with its own set of challenges. Tiding over them will require a focused approach and consistently adapting to changing requirements. Customising the tools and processes mentioned above will go a long way in helping you achieve that.
JaZaa Business Services takes pride in its long-term associations with start-ups from varied industries and worldwide locations. We provide end-to-end business solutions to startups right from its early stage to its development phase. We aim to provide wholesome and qualitative services to our clients by focusing on their growth and overall development. We deeply value our relationship with clients and look forward to serving them in the best of their interests.
JaZaa Business Services takes pride in its long-term associations with start-ups from varied industries and worldwide locations. We provide end to end business solutions to Start-ups right from its early stage to its development phase. We aim to provide wholesome and qualitative services to our clients by focusing on their growth and overall development. We deeply value our relationship with clients and look forward to serve them in the best of their interests.
We also give CFO services along with accounting and bookkeeping. All the data analysis is done, for our clients, to take decisions accordingly. Financial management is a daunting task as it encompasses all the departments and the whole company. Working with us enables our clients to have someone who has a clear understanding of their goals and has the expertise to help them achieve these goals and turn their dream into a reality.