What’s Holding You Back from Next-Level Business Growth?
Today, I’m focusing on two reasons you may not be reaching the next level business growth you desire.
1) Daily operations are trumping strategic planning
So, your business growth isn’t what you expected. It’s possible you’ve been overly focused on day-to-day operations, running your business rather than looking forward. If the busyness of your business (say that three times in a row!) has kept you preoccupied then you are missing out on what could be next. That’s a lost opportunity for next level business growth. In the early startup stages, having intense focus makes sense. After all, you want your business to grow its customer base and for revenues to follow. If you’re not seeing the business growth you planned for, customer base or revenues, then it doesn’t make sense to continue operations with your nose to the grindstone. It may not be evident that you’re in a rut, but take a moment now to think about it. Where has your attention been lately? On the immediate issues? Putting out fires, so to speak? If you’re not seeing the business growth you expect or want, then doing more of the same won’t improve the situation. You need to change your approach.
How to think long term
What is your vision or strategy for your business growth? Refocusing on your business strategy isn’t something you can simply add to your to-do list; it just won’t get the attention it needs. Try bumping a few other items off your to-do list and delegating them to your employees. If you don’t have employees to delegate operational work then pay a temp, freelancer, or contractor so you can free up time to do some strategic planning around business growth. (If cash is too tight to hire help, consider this.) It’s important to schedule a block of time to think about new opportunities, products, markets, and what your customers need. You poured your abilities and strengths into building your business. It’s your creativity and ability to envision the business in the first place that makes you a business owner. So, trust your team to execute the day-to-day functions while you refocus on the vision for your business. My last bit of advice today on strategic planning for business growth is this: Revisit your strategy at least quarterly to ensure you’re still on track and make adjustments as necessary.
2) Too much focus on the competition
Another reason that the business growth you expected isn’t happening is that your energy may be divided. Perhaps you’re paying too much attention to what other companies are doing. Of course, there are benefits to knowing how to differentiate your product or service and if your value to price ratio is in line with what customers are willing to pay. However, you didn’t start your business purely because you find joy in competing with other companies. (Duh.) You started out passionate about your idea, product, or service and you brought your unique creativity and energy to build out your business and serve your customers in a unique way. In other words, your competitors aren’t you! So, stop wasting your energy and time being overly focused on the competition. Instead, spend that time and energy considering your customers’ current needs and how to innovate your product or service. The positive, creative energy you bring will be reflected in your business growth.
In summary, get some perspective on your role as owner and check in periodically to see where your business is at. Block off time to strategize and delegate business operations, so you can focus on the unique value you bring to your customers. Then get on to doing what you love, whether focusing on your favorite parts of your business, spending time with your family, or diving into meaningful causes.