Fast Lane: What’s holding you back from growing?

Fast Lane: What’s holding you back from growing?

This week SmartCompany is hosting our Growing Your Business seminar as part of Victoria’s Small Business Festival.  

On Wednesday evening digital influencer Peter Williams, sales expert Sue Barrett, and entrepreneur Ryan Trainor will be sharing their growth tips and experiences.

How to grow your business is an ongoing challenge for entrepreneurs who have put in the hard yards in establishing a business but then find that growth stagnates.

So many entrepreneurs come up with a good idea, but are unable to scale their businesses for growth.

While each business is unique there are a few barriers which all businesses face.

Author and business expert Verne Harnish, known as the “growth guy” because of his focus on scaling, identifies three barriers to growing a business.

Firstly Harnish says you need to grow the people in your business and that’s not just the senior management.  

He recommends looking at everyone in your business, particularly those who are customer-facing, like the sales people.

The second barrier to growth Harnish identifies is process.

“Entrepreneurs get laser-focused on building on the functions of their business but they forget about the work that takes places to process those functions,” Harnish says.

While small businesses often believe they are lean and more efficient than big business, Harnish warns it is often the opposite. 

He recommends putting in place routines and processes to enable growth.

The third barrier to growth Harnish identifies is marketing.

“It’s the function of the business that’s most crucial in attracting new customers, investors, media attention, board members and advisers,” he says.

“It’s about scaling up your relationships.”

What Harnish doesn’t touch on though is the main problem holding most SMEs back from growing.

That’s actually taking the time to think about and plan for growth.

Too often entrepreneurs are too busy fighting fires on the day-to-day issues that arise in business.

They don’t have the time or head space to step back and actually work on their business rather than in it.

In the hunt for growth it’s time to dust off that business plan and turn it into a growth plan.

Come along on Wednesday night and keep reading SmartCompany this week for more tips on growing your business. 




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