My business is running me.  I am ready to expand but if I do more of what I am currently doing it will kill me.  How do I increase my sales, build my team, expand my space, enter new markets when I am running around like a chicken with my head cut off?

 

You are right to be concerned.  More businesses fail right after a big growth phase than any other time. Why?  Because they put everything they knew, everything they had in to create the growth, and growth in and of itself is not a one-time thing. It needs to be continuous. A tree doesn’t grow one year and is so proud of what it accomplished that it stays there. The growth must be sustainable growth to have it be effective.

This is the first in a series of eight articles addressing the top concerns entrepreneurs express when they sit down with us to talk about the future of their business.

Working from the 7 Building Blocks of Business, I will open each block to identify the corresponding bottleneck and how this building block helps you build a sustainable, leveraged, and profitable business.

 

 

 

 

“How do I decide where to start, it seems like my business needs everything”  

OR     “How do I know where to start, I think we are doing a good job with everything but we are not getting the results I want to see”

It can be difficult to know what needs to be done today. When everything is a priority, nothing is a priority. 

Stop and look at your business from an outside point of view, or have someone you trust do that with you.  There are a lot of moving parts. The whole process can only go as smoothly as the most difficult component.

Imagine it like a production line with 8 different machines that each produce a part of the final product.  If machines 1 thru 3 can produce at 1500 pieces per hour, and machine 4 produces at 800 pieces per hour. Your bottleneck is machine 4. Until you figure out how to improve the time use there you cannot increase product overall.

Once you solve the problem on machine #4, the bottleneck does not go away, it moves. There is always a bottleneck, the sooner you can identify, or predict the next bottleneck the faster you can fix it. 

 

There is ALWAYS a bottleneck

Here are the 7 Building Blocks for every business and what your business may be experiencing if this is your #1 bottleneck

  • If you are unfocused and unsure what to do each day to keep your business moving forward your bottleneck is in PLANNING

 

  • Short on qualified leads means your top bottleneck is most likely MARKETING 

 

  • There are prospects to talk with but your conversion rate is low, time to look at SALES.   

 

  • Customers seem happy with your work but there are limitations to what you can upsell or resell to them, time to consider your PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT 

 

  • People are not telling others about your work, or maybe they are, either way your referrals and / or your repeat sales are too low, CUSTOMER SERVICE needs attention 

 

  • Everything seems to be going okay, or maybe everything seems to be falling apart, either way the business is not progressing as it should and you do not know where to start; PERSONAL GROWTH for the leader is essential 

 

  • Not sure if you should even market because you do not know how you would handle any more work? If your team is struggling to keep up; TEAM GROWTH needs to be your focus to increase the capacity and profitability in your business.