Almost every business owner hopes for fast growth, but it can be a tricky thing to manage once it happens. Rapid growth means you need to make rapid changes in order to accommodate the demand for your products or services. Plus achieving initial growth is one thing, but sustaining it over a long period of time is another. In order to help you successfully manage your fast-growing business, here are three useful tips.
Tip #1: Develop a Hiring Process
In order to keep up with the demands of your business’s growth, you’ll likely have to start hiring new employees. Although it can be tempting to rush through hiring and bring on new hires quickly in order to meet immediate demand, this isn’t a good strategy in the long-term. You’ll have to invest a lot of time, money, and energy into recruiting, hiring, onboarding, and training new hires, so you should make an effort to find qualified employees who are enthusiastic about your company’s mission, and will likely remain on the team for a long time.
The best way to find high-quality employees is by developing a thorough hiring process. Although the hiring process can be time-consuming, and in some cases quite costly, it’s necessary for weeding out those who wouldn’t be a good fit for your company, and identifying those who have the potential to thrive. In order to optimize your hiring process, you should:
- Use recruitment services or post openings to job sites yourself
- Write detailed job descriptions
- Conduct multiple interviews with candidates
- Use a candidate evaluation form or come up with your own evaluation criteria
It’s also extremely important that you screen candidates before extending an offer to them. Run an online criminal background check, reach out to their references, or give them a skills assessment in order to ensure that you’re making the right hire.
Tip #2: Listen to Client Feedback
Keeping your clients happy is essential to maintaining the continued growth and success of your business. In the midst of hiring and restructuring and everything else that rapid growth entails, it can be easy to lose sight of what’s most important: the satisfaction of your clients.
As a small startup, you likely only had a few clients, thus you were able to develop a close relationship with them and cater to their every need. But as you grow, you’re likely taking on more clients and more work, which may make it harder to keep track of the details.
As a business owner, you need to make sure that your business’s growth doesn’t erode the quality of its work. So, check in with your clients here and there—listen to any feedback they have and gauge their satisfaction with your work.
Tip #3: Find Places to Cut Back
While cutting back may sound counterintuitive for a business experiencing growth at a fast rate, it’s a necessity if you want to maintain that growth. This doesn’t mean you should go around cutting corners, trying to save every penny you possibly can. What a growing business really needs to do is keep what works and discard what doesn’t.
When a business shifts from a startup into something larger and more complex, it will likely be forced to change a lot of its old processes. Things that used to work when there was just a small group of employees, or only a few clients, may not work now that you’re operating on a larger scale. That means you have to adjust your processes accordingly to accommodate the larger workload and get rid of those processes that are no longer efficient. As your business grows, you should constantly be reevaluating the way it operates, keeping an eye out for weaknesses and redundancies that may be hindering productivity.
Take a look at your employees, too, and see how they’re dealing with changes. When a business grows at a rapid pace, the core staff often has to take on additional responsibilities, find solutions to new problems, and manage many tasks at once. Getting rid of redundant or inefficient processes as you grow can free up time for these employees to deal with their new tasks and responsibilities. Just check in with them on a regular basis to make sure they’re receiving the support they need.
Managing a growing business can be tough and you’ll likely make mistakes somewhere down the line but, with these three tips in mind, you’ll be better prepared to sustain that growth and capitalize on it in the long-term.