It's almost a universal imperative. Growth is good. Being bigger, stronger, better and faster is something almost all of us strive for. We are constantly struggling to increase our worth: our sales, our output and our bottom line. Success is based on the size of our company, the amount of our assets and the scope of our client base. But is it always the best course of action?
Is Bigger Better?
In terms of business, bigger isn't always better. Unchecked growth almost always leads to failure. When it comes time to make the decision whether or not to grow, there are several factors you should consider -
- Are you actually ready to increase services and take on more clients?
- Can you afford the staff you'll need to keep everything running smoothly?
- Is your current location big enough for a potential expansion or will you have to move?
- Can your business infrastructure support new business?
- Should you secure investment funding first?
- What is the future of the market for your business?
If you have positive answers for all these questions, you should feel confident moving forward. If the answer you're not quite sure on some, then resist the urge to grow just because you think you should. Take the opportunity to re-think your long-term plan and only proceed when it really makes sense.
Moving Forward, But Not Really
Sometimes increasing sales does not mean you're actually moving forward. Even though you're serving more customers and increasing your turnover, you suddenly might find yourself in financial trouble. If you've increased your business, but are failing to cover your expenses, you'll usually find inefficiencies somewhere in the business infrastructure. Inefficiencies that may have been introduced by growing too quickly.
Focus on Where You Are
Before focusing on where you should be going, focus on where you are. Are your business processes in need of improvement or streamlining? Are there services you should consider that will enhance the efficiency of your business?
If you want to answer the question of whether you want to grow or not, you first need to answer the question of whether you have a choice. And that answer is? Of course. You don't have to expand - and you shouldn't - if you know your business can't support the growth.
Remember that you're in control! You decide the pace at which you'd like to grow. In the end, being smart about where you are going will help you find success!