The excitement that comes with establishing a small business isn’t the same as taking the next steps in expanding that business. Nonetheless, getting to that stage is a success even though it requires more effort and capital to expand. If you are struggling to make this happen, apply these 5 tips to expand your small business.
Have a plan to expand your small business.
As much as you are excited to extend your business, it is advisable to have a plan that is easy to understand and can be well executed.
You want to avoid ruining the business with your expansion plans. Hence, your small business plan should state clearly what you want to achieve in the short term, mid, and long term.
As a small business owner, it is recommended to not just have your plan in mind but to lay them down to have a well-structured document you can always refer to.
Having a plan gives you a clear picture of:
- Where you are heading.
- Key metrics/ elements of the business to improve.
- A guide to tracking your progress and adjust changes that may come up along the way.
Hire the right people to grow your small business.
Having grown to the stage where you are now thinking of expanding, the makeup of your team could make or mar your expansion.
To expand the business, you should prioritize employing people with specific skills to help attain the small business goals.
You can achieve this by:
- Liaising within your personal or business network to recommend the right fit team members that you require for your business.
- Attend job fairs to meet job seekers by sharing your company needs with them, taking note of their resumes to help you in your sifting and interviewing process.
- If your business has the resources to train, you can focus on hiring interns who also want to sharpen their skills. These interns can provide the business with new and fresh ideas.
Interns can provide you with the right skills without you having to make great financial commitments and benefits.
Since you are in the middle of an expansion, you may want to channel your energy here more.
With all this in mind, you should identify the must-have skill you require and the employee’s ability to take on more responsibility.
Develop a company culture.
A business with a great work culture stands a high chance of being successful.
A culture of collaborations, teamwork, meeting targets and free flow of ideas will impact positively on the bottom line.
One way to establish good company culture is to focus largely on your employees. Provide the support and tools they need to carry out their duties.
Happy employees impact productivity, they would be able to go the extra mile to serve your customers.
To enhance company culture, do the following:
- Make employees feel included in the day-to-day operations of the business.
- Give them responsibilities to manage. It would help them feel a part of the company in general.
- Take note of their opinions and suggestions, they interact more with the customers than you.
- Creating a work environment that rewards efforts fairly.
For instance, there can be a monetary/experiential reward for any employee who meets 90% of their goals quarterly. This practice will push for creativity and innovation which in the long run will help your business grow.
Focus on Innovation to develop your small business.
With your expansion in progress, there will be room for further growth, which will force you to be focused on your core strengths as a business.
While doing that, you may want to also make way for changes. Remember, new solutions are created to meet different challenges all the time, different business ideas spring up all the time therefore, you as a business must embrace the changes and adjust accordingly.
Results from the 2015 Deloitte Innovation Survey saw sixty-six percent of the respondents agreeing to innovation being important for business growth.
By being innovative, you carve that unique niche for your brand and stand out from the competition. Also, as you welcome change, you align with your customers by meeting them at every stage of their customer journey.
Retain existing customers to expand your small business.
One of the challenges businesses on the verge of expansion face is customer retention. Retaining your customers can be very demanding yet it can be managed if done well.
Customer retention is mainly building a continuous relationship with your existing customers to establish trust and loyalty.
Trust is key in customer relationship and as such, as a small business, you must be very strategic and creative about it. You should have an effective customer relationship management(CRM) system in place to manage your customers.
While doing this, you should stay on top of your game as a brand, by being consistent in your communication, and maintaining your authority in that specific industry.
Doing the above cements, the trust your existing customers have in you.
We hope these five tips help in your business expansion journey.