The 7 Most Common Barriers to Scaling a Business

The 7 Most Common Barriers to Scaling a Business
Scaling your business is all about taking a planned approach to growth. Companies that don’t prepare to scale will face major roadblocks and may even fail. One of the best ways to minimize this risk is to know the barriers to growth and prepare well for them. 
Lack of Leadership

As a business scales, there’s a higher level of responsibility needed to lead it. It requires stronger and more effective leadership to take your business to the next level. You’ll need to hire, train, manage, and work with new people, and these skills are essential for keeping them on track and motivated. 
Trying to Scale Without an Organizational Structure

Until now, you’ve managed by yourself or with a small team. There’s been little need to create an organizational chart and clearly assign roles. A business with just a few employees is simple, but you can’t scale this way.

In order to scale, you’ll need to create an organizational structure that’s scalable. It should designate roles and responsibilities, and who will report to whom. Then, as you go about building your team, you can plug new staff into this structure. 
Infrastructure That’s Not Ready to Scale

When you’re a small business, you probably manage much of the work yourself. Everything is a custom project. But this isn’t a scalable infrastructure for your business when it starts growing. 
As you serve a larger base of customers and clients, you need standardization and efficiency. Each process needs to be streamlined, including documentation for each of your processes that enables anyone to do them. 

Key areas that need scalable infrastructure include IT, customer service, facilities, legal services, and finances. You need to build the infrastructure for a large-scale organization before growing so your business doesn’t get overwhelmed. 
Failure to Think Strategically

Scaling takes a small business and gives it the capacity to grow into a large organization. It puts you into new markets going up against different competitors. It requires much more strategic thinking and decision-making. For business owners who have never thought strategically on this scale before, it can be a major challenge.
Not Enough Market Information

All decisions regarding scaling a business require up-to-date information from the market. You’ll need data on customers, the overall market, and your competitors. You may be marketing new products, moving into new markets, and adding new marketing channels. 

You’ve already done your marketing to where you’re at now. Next, you need to get even more feedback and data from the market than before. 
Fear of Losing Control

Finally, one of the biggest barriers to scaling is your mindset. In order to scale, you have to let go of some control of your business. Up until now, you might have handled everything yourself. You know your competencies. Now, you need to entrust some aspects of your business to others. This is very hard for many business owners to do, but overcoming this barrier will help you scale the right way. 
Want to learn more about how you can scale your business? Head over here:  Building a Scalable Business

Planning How to Scale Your Business

Planning How to Scale Your Business
Many businesses reach a point in their business where they feel stuck. They’ve succeeded at their short-term goals, and now they don’t know where to go next. You’re growing steadily, but what you’d really like to see is your revenue shoot up exponentially. 
Before that growth starts, there are many areas where you need to prepare. Here are the top tips on planning to scale your business. 
Focus on Where You Want to Be

Focus on where you want to be in the future, not where you are now. While you’ll need to analyze your current business performance and infrastructure in order to make changes, base your decisions on where you’ll be in a year, 5 years, or beyond. Use the future as your starting point and then figure out how to get there. 
Get in Tune with Your Core Values

As you grow, you need to stay true to who you are. The way to do this is to identify the core values that drive your business. These are also the core values you share with your customers, the reason they buy from you. Make this clear, and you can grow in the right direction so these essentials won’t change. 
Plan Well and Follow a Process

You don’t want your business to grow chaotically. There needs to be a plan and process in place so you can grow in a controlled way toward the goals you want to achieve. Visualize the necessary steps you’ll need to take and create a viable roadmap that’s as simple and streamlined as possible. Prepare each aspect of your business and take these steps. 
Know Your Audience Well

Everything about your business revolves around your customers and their needs. As you scale, you must keep meeting these needs and finding new needs you can address. To do this, you need to know your customers well and make each decision based on their feedback. 
Reconsider Your Products and Services

The success of your business is determined by its products and services. Are your offerings ready to scale? Is there more unmet demand for them? Are there new offerings you can provide? Identify the strengths and weaknesses of your products and figure out the unique value they offer. 
Start Building a Great Team

You should start building your team early, long before you start growing. Once your business takes off, you’ll have a dramatic and sudden need for more staff. This is a resource you can’t be in short supply of and in a pinch, it’s impossible to hire and train the right talent. Start building your team and delegating tasks now as part of scaling your business and preparing it for growth. 
Prepare for Bumps in the Road

Scaling isn’t easy for any business. Every large company has gone through its share of ups and downs to get where it is today. Things never go exactly as planned, so be ready for some challenges and bumps in the road. Remember that the rewards outweigh the problems you’ll face, and get excited to meet the challenges head-on. 
Want to learn more about how you can scale your business? Head over here:  Building a Scalable Business

Do You Have This Essential Skill for Scaling Your Business?

Do You Have This Essential Skill for Scaling Your Business?
There are many skills you need to have in order to scale your business. But there’s one simple soft skill that’s an absolute must for business owners getting ready to scale: you need to be armed with unshakeable confidence.

Most of us suffer from some measure of lack of confidence. This is only natural. But as your business grows, you’ll face many challenges. You need unbreakable confidence to face these challenges and overcome them with flying colors. 
Confidence is a State of Mind

When you’re not feeling confident, it’s easy to look at others and imagine confidence is just some innate quality they have that you don’t. However, nobody is born with more confidence than others. It’s a mindset that anyone can cultivate. 
Get Out of Your Comfort Zone

Confidence is a habit. Learn to use it well, and you can pull it out whenever you need it. 
One way to cultivate the habit of confidence is to purposely put yourself in uncomfortable situations. Force yourself out of your comfort zone. You’ll find that whatever failure you’re fearing isn’t so bad after all. 
Be More Prepared

One way to boost confidence is to make sure you’re prepared, and then prepare some more.
Imagine going into a meeting where you’ve thoroughly gone through the issues to be discussed so many times that you can recite the details at a second’s notice. It would almost be hard NOT to feel confident.
Prepare well for what’s ahead. Anticipate anything unexpected that could happen or questions you might be asked and make sure you feel comfortable with your answers. 
Know Your Triggers

What situations hurt your confidence most? Which do you feel most nervous about? 
If you can identify the triggers that make you lose your confidence, you can prepare even more for these. It’ll help to show you what areas you should focus on improving. 
Dress for Confidence

How does it make you feel when you dress well? How we present ourselves has a powerful impact on how we feel. Your clothes, grooming, hygiene, and posture can give you more confidence. 
Exactly what this means will depend on your individual situation and preferences, but try to identify the elements that make you feel most confident and use those regularly.
Find Confidence Role Models

Who do you see as confident? Who makes you wish you were as confident as they are?
Find a few confidence role models and ask yourself why you see them this way. Are there any ideas you could steal from them? Try to copy some of their habits and see if they work for you as well. 
Reduce Your Stress

Keep your stress under control. Stress can trigger issues with how we feel about ourselves. Confidence means not letting stress get to you.

Practice good lifestyle habits like sleeping enough, eating well, and getting some exercise. Learn some stress reduction techniques like meditation or affirmations that you can use when you need them.
Collect Your Successes

As you go about getting out of your comfort zone and trying new things, keep track of your successes. You’ll get feedback from your actions. As you recount your successes, you’ll create a positive feedback loop for getting more confident

Want to learn more about how you can scale your business and earn more? Head over here: Building a Scalable Business

Want to Scale Your Business? 8 Best Practices for Training Your Team

Want to Scale Your Business? 8 Best Practices for Training Your Team
The quality of your team depends not just on their talent, but also how well they’re trained. You can hire the best people but if your training is lacking, they won’t carry out their work to get the results you want. As you scale, you’ll have a great deal of training to do, so here are the best practices for doing it right. 
Create an Onboarding Process

You need to make sure your new hires understand and align with your company’s values and vision. They need to understand the “why” behind everything your organization does. Onboarding means teaching new hires about your company culture, creating good rapport, and learning about your new staff so you can help them do their best.
Invest in Online Training

In today’s digital age, you might have workers scattered across the globe. But even if your team is local, online training saves a great deal of cost over in-person training and makes it easier for everyone. Tech tools available today make it simpler than ever to train online, so there’s no reason not to. 

As part of your training, you can also create an online knowledge base that your staff can refer to post-training when they need further help or a refresher. 
Set Clear Roles and Responsibilities

As your organization grows, you’ll have more people handling a variety of tasks. It’s more important than ever to clarify each person’s roles and responsibilities. Make this clear and specific so no one is confused about what they’re supposed to be doing.
Be on the Lookout for Leaders

As the teams in your organization become more complex, you’ll want to delegate leadership to individuals who can handle it. As you hire people, consider each for leadership potential. You’ll find some of them that seem to “get it” and show the qualities you need in management. 
Offer Additional Learning Opportunities

Offer further educational and training opportunities for your new staff. For example, you might hold small group or one-on-one coaching, or give them access to online courses. Offer various formats as people have different learning styles. 

You can offer courses beyond their current roles and responsibilities as well for career enrichment. This helps not only keep your staff happy and fulfilled but also opens up opportunities for them to take on new roles at your company in the future. 
Document the Training and Onboarding Process

As you go about training and onboarding your staff, document everything you do. Keep track of the process so you can better understand what’s working and what’s not. Documenting also helps you create standards and protocols, which every organization needs to have as it scales. 
Gather Feedback and Track Results

Keep track of your team’s performance. Reach out to them to find out where they’re struggling or where there are obstacles to remove. Through this feedback, you can find ways to improve the training process through things like reassigning tasks, offering additional training, or restructuring teams. 
Start Creating Your Training Program Early

Once your business starts to grow exponentially, you’ll have much to do, and things may feel overwhelming. That’s not an optimal time for creating a training program from scratch. Start planning how you’ll train your team now so you’re prepared for team growth as you scale your business.  

Want to learn more about how you can scale your business and earn more? Head over here: Building a Scalable Business

The 5 Best Tech Tools for Scaling Your Business

The 5 Best Tech Tools for Scaling Your Business
You’ll face many challenges when scaling your business. One of the greatest sources of help is automation. Here are some of the tech tools available to make scaling your business easier and more successful. 
Customer Relationship Management

A CRM (customer relationship management) system is essential for any business that wants to scale. As you grow, you need to make sure you’re still offering a great customer experience, and your CRM helps you do this.

CRM programs like the one I use AttractWell, or others like Zendesk, HubSpot, and Salesforce help you manage every aspect of client interactions. The main function they offer is tracking all interactions and data about clients so you can analyze and refer to that information whenever you need it.

These programs also offer a variety of extra features that help you with marketing, analytics, and lead generation. 
Automated Accounting

One of the major reasons businesses fail to scale is poor cash flow. Up until now, you’ve been able to manage your accounting on your own, as your needs haven’t been very complex. But when you grow rapidly, you’ll need to upgrade.

Many businesses choose to hire an accountant or outsource to a virtual finance professional. But you can also use accounting software programs to help you track profits, budget, and funding. QuickBooks and Wave are two highly regarded accounting programs that offer a wealth of features. 
Content Creation Tools

Content creation takes a great deal of time, so it’s helpful to use tools that will streamline the process. Programs like Grammarly help you edit your work and offer ideas for improving your copy. 

You’ll also need tools to help manage content. A great simple and free tool for this is Google Docs, which allows you to save content in one place where all team members can access it and edit. 

For your visual content needs, you should invest in a product like Canva or Adobe Photoshop that make creating and editing visual content easier.  
Communication Tools to Keep Your Team on Track

As you grow your team, there will be more collaborative tasks and projects to stay on top of. As communication needs grow, you’ll need tools to make it easy for team members to talk to each other.
Gmail is a great communication tool because in addition to offering one of the best free email services, it also has features like Docs, Calendar, and Drive that your team can use. You may also want to invest in a project management tool like Monday or Asana, and an instant communication tool like Slack. 
Analytics Tools for Monitoring

You need to carefully monitor KPIs as you grow, so choose an analytics tool that will give you the data you need. 

Google Analytics is a good, free program that offers a wealth of metrics and customized reporting. There are many premium programs available as well with even more features. 

You’ll also find analytics tools built into some of your other systems, like your CRM and autoresponder. Leverage these sources of data as well.
Choosing the Right Automation Tools

For each tool you’re considering, take the time to test out a trial version. See how easy it is to use and decide if it’s suitable for the processes you need automated. Read online reviews as well to get an idea of its potential downsides. 

Start using automation tools now to have them in place before you scale. 
Want to learn more about how you can scale your business and earn more? Head over here: Building a Scalable Business