Point blank…every start-up company wants long-term success. Of course, there's a difference between where you are now and where you see your company years from now. In between is the awkward phase in your company’s growth trajectory that is tricky to navigate without the right tools and the right perspective. The following is solid advice for dealing with the growing pains that come from explosive company growth:
Your Start-up Needs to Take One Step at a Time
One of the challenges faced by growing start-ups is promoting growth without losing the positive attributes that made the company a success, whether it is fantastic customer service or exacting attention to detail. Lindsey Carnett, CEO of Marketing Maven Public Relations, offers what she terms a theoretical solution to the problem: “place one foot before the other and you won’t stumble.” When a business grows too quickly, it can create an issue with customer service. As your company grows, you must maintain the level of quality and service that started your success in the first place. This is an important step for any industry.
Moderating growth so that it doesn’t outpace your company’s capacity to deliver excellent products and services is always an important task. It's also important to not intentionally smother growth in fear of growing too fast. Finding that all-important balance is perhaps one of the most important goals of any start-up. Customers want small-business service with big-business convenience. With steady growth an attention to customer needs, it's possible to offer both.
New Tools, New Perspective
As your start-up expands, you may find yourself in need of an entirely new suite of tools and strategies to effectively manage important day-to-day activities. For instance, a pay calculator can help payroll managers accurately calculate payment amounts and verify federal and state withholding. Intuit offers a free payroll calculator as well as other resources to help you with your accounting needs. They give advice on hiring employees, health care, labor laws and tax forms.
You’ll also find yourself in need of new blood with the talent and capabilities to handle the growing number of new tasks within the company. This is where the infrastructure of a seasoned recruiting agency comes into play, especially as your company develops its own recruitment infrastructure. When deciding if a recruiting company is right for your company, consider the two most important factors: time and money. Outside recruiting can be pricey, but when you consider the time, effort and money it takes to do the hiring process yourself, you can actually save money with a recruiter. It can be a daunting task to find the right employee, and you are out even more money if they turn out to be a bad fit. Outside recruiters can find ideal candidates and save you money and hassle.
Another challenge is evolving your own leadership role within the company to better reflect these new changes. As Skimlinks founder and CEO Alicia Navarro explains, communication is the key to navigating this make-or-break period in your company’s young history. You want to be hands-on and involved, but trusting and delegating is a major part of a successfully growing company. It's not only important to develop the ability to delegate to your growing team, but also being able to share your vision and explain your decisions in a clear and decisive manner. Make the goals and mission of the company clear and your employees will be empowered to meet those needs.
It’s here where company leaders can benefit from the guidance and techniques offered through good leadership training. Otherwise, it can take a lengthy and painful period of trial-and-error to effectively hone the techniques needed to lead your expanding team effectively.
It's also important to cultivate a set of values throughout the entire organization, as recruiter Bruce Dorland notes. According to Dorland, your organization’s values will insure that the same culture that motivated your company remains a motivating force as it grows. In addition, company leaders must also set the tone by providing the type of leadership that lives up to those values. A company can evolve when all parts are balanced and the team develops together.