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Plan for business growth
Business growth can take place in many stages. These stages are a cycle, repeating each time you implement a change to your business. Which stage is your business in today?
The business idea is created. Plans are put in place to start operating.
The business plan is complete and targets are established.
The business is operating and coping with any problems that arise. Systems are in place and, ideally, profits are made.
The business matures and needs to expand. Management changes or expands to deal with the size or complexity of the business.
The business is very competitive. Activities are regularly reviewed and changed to achieve ongoing success.
The business diversifies into new markets, products or alliances.
Whether your business has just started or is ready to diversify, it is important to plan growth so that it is controlled and properly managed. The following can help you plan for growth:
Set goals for growth
Establish what you want your business to achieve. Create a plan of short and long-term goals to grow your business.
Involve management and staff
Meet frequently with management and staff to review results and to monitor current performance. Encourage and motivate your staff to be involved in the growth of your business.
To find out more about how the growth of your business might impact your staff, learn about managing people through change.
A bigger cash flow does not always mean that you are making a profit. Controlling costs is critical for successful growth.
Regularly review targets
Schedule a monthly review of how your business is performing. Compare actual results with your goals, plans and budgets. If your plan for growth is not working, or you are experiencing financial or operational problems, ask for help immediately.
Develop good systems
Build good reporting systems into your business. You want information to be accessed quickly and easily so you can compare business projections with business performance. A good reporting system can keep you informed and enable you to make prompt decisions when necessary.