Responding to staffing and skills shortages
Your business's ability to succeed during rapid expansion will depend on the skills and expertise of your staff as well as your ability to communicate effectively with them through this period of change and uncertainty.
Hiring new staff
You may need to employ more staff during your business's expansion so that existing staff don't have to shoulder an excessive workload or carry out duties beyond their expertise. It is important to spend enough time on recruitment activities, because employing the right people with appropriate skills will give good results in the long term. To hire the right people, make sure you:
- conduct a proper staff skills assessment
- spend enough time interviewing job candidates
- train your new recruits and provide a staff induction when they have been appointed.
Tending to existing staff
Existing staff also need your care and attention during your business's rapid growth phase. Staff may be carrying large workloads, feel uncertain about their future role in the business or cope poorly with major changes in the workplace.
To avoid declining morale, make sure you keep your staff informed and engaged during this period of upheaval. Regular and open communication is one of the key principles of change management — the systematic approach to change in an organisation. Communicate with your staff about your business goals, expectations and progress as well as operational matters such as changing roles and procedures.
Changing business owner's role
When a business grows rapidly, the business owner's role will also grow rapidly. Due to the sudden increase in work volume and complexity, it is easy to experience burnout - or, at the very least, high levels of stress during this demanding time. To avoid burnout in the short term, you will need to manage your time efficiently and delegate less important tasks to others. In the longer term, you will need to:
- develop good time management skills
- develop business management and leadership skills
- trust delegates to do their job so you are freed up to concentrate on the more important aspects of your business.