4 THINGS TO AVOID AS YOUR BUSINESS EVOLVES
So you’ve started your business. You have a fantastic team to work with, a great vision for your product or service, and you possess the talent and intelligence to get your company off its feet. Sound about right?
Business leaders often excel when their company is in the start-up phase. However, many of the skills required to start a business don’t translate well to the future of the company. In this article, we’ll go over the four big mistakes that businesses make that prevent them from “scaling” their company, as well as advice for how to avoid these mistakes.
The first problem that often holds a company back is that their leaders are often too loyal to their team. Obviously, you and your team need to have a strong bond. However, business leaders are often blinded by their loyalty that they refuse to recognize when a team member is not performing strong enough. Strong business leaders are objective about their team members, and are able to compartmentalize their personal relationships as separate from what is necessary for their business.
As your business grows, set aside time every few weeks to consider the strengths and contributions of each team member, and be honest when a member’s performance needs to improve.
The second problem involves the tasks that your company prioritizes. Start-up companies set out with a short set of tasks: putting together a team, designing the product, starting an advertising campaign, etc. As the business grows, so does the task list, and many entrepreneurs fail to accommodate. Businesses with poor task prioritization either believe that they have to invest the same amount of energy into each individual task, or they focus on the same tasks that they started out with and fail to adapt to changing needs.
Your business should set time aside to evaluate its priorities. Successful businesses will often use the quarterly system to their advantage, meeting every 90 days to evaluate their priorities and focus on achieving a few measurable goals rather than a lot of specific tasks. Taking the time to evaluate your priorities will keep your business competitive and at the edge of your industry.
Similar to task prioritization, business leaders become inadvertently inflexible when they operate with tunnel vision. Start-up companies often have one goal in mind: successfully building and selling their product. However, the unsuccessful company will be so focused on one specific product that they won’t adapt to changes in the industry or listen to feedback from investors and partners.
Your vision for your product is what helped you create your business, but don’t be held back by it. To avoid this, you should do two things: 1) take note of feedback from your investors and team members. Whether scheduling this feedback into business meetings or reaching out 1-on-1, this feedback is essential to fostering a successful product and a productive company. 2) keep ahead of market trends. A business that is hyper-focused on its product may fail to realize that the market’s interests have shifted, or they may fail to create an effective advertising campaign as marketing strategies evolve. Use teamwork and collaboration to your advantage as you and your company evolve with the ever-changing marketplace.
The last problem that start-up companies face as they move forward is isolation. At the beginning, isolation is crucial: long, fervent hours spent designing and developing a product with a select group of people often produces the most influential work. Many visionaries and brilliant entrepreneurs themselves have been introverted, preferring quiet thought and planning to the social demands of leadership.
But those social demands do arise, and the worst thing a business can do is stay holed up – including the CEO. Successful businesses thrive both in isolation and in the spotlight, and an effective company evolves with the demands of social media, advertising strategies, and public campaigns.
Keep these tips in mind as your business blooms from bud to bouquet. As your business evolves from isolation to the spotlight, keep us in mind for branding and visual design services. Contact us at Cast Design Team for a free assessment and we will get you started on the next step to branding your business.