Everyone starts somewhere. Even some of the most successful businesses like Amazon for example started in Jeff Bezos’ garage. Where you start does not define where you will end up, even if you are starting a business with little to no experience. What does define your success is the decisions and journey you take when you grow and expand your business. Here are some top tips to consider when you are looking to expand your business.
Hiring and training employees
One of the first things that should be on any business owner's mind when considering the expansion of their business, is not only finding employees to delegate work to, but also finding the right employees for their business. When you are looking for employees, make sure that you are not only looking for candidates with the relevant skills and qualifications, but also the right attitude, same morals, and strong work ethics. The right person for the job may not have the relevant skills, training, or qualifications, but this is something that you can provide for them over time whether it is first aid, manual handling, or even cybersecurity courses for employees of your business.
Finding a suitable premises for your business to move into
There are a few things that you should think about when looking for a suitable premises to move your business into, two of the most important factors to consider are its location, and growth potential.
You need to ensure that you are in a location that is not only optimal for your customers or clients, but also for you, your staff, and any potential business partners to get to. Not all of these factors need to be considered for example, if your business is not customer facing then this factor can be disregarded.
You don’t want to buy or rent a space that is too big or too small as both could end up costing you money. If you move into a premises that you could rapidly outgrow then you will end up spending time, energy, and money on looking for and relocating your business again, and if you move into a premises that is too big or costly, you could end up bleeding money through the property. While no one can predict the future, you can make some reasonably educated guesses as to the growth of your business and move forward based on your predicted projection.
Re-adjust your business plan and goals
When expanding your business, you will need to revisit your current business plan and goals to re-adjust them. If you do not do this then you risk your business's growth faltering or becoming stagnant. Make sure that you are expanding your business goals and business plan alongside your growth and decisions. Be careful that you do not overreach though, as this can be just as damaging to your business as not readjusting your business plan or goals. Do your research, find what is achievable and take calculated steps forward.
Consider new challenges that you might face
The expansion of your business will of course bring multiple benefits such as the delegation of work among your employees, new business opportunities, and hopefully higher profits and company growth. But something to be aware of is the new challenges you may face. An easy fix to avoid getting stuck or tripped up by these challenges is to first off do your research, and secondly, constantly evaluate your business and where it stands. This way you will be aware of any potential problems or challenges that may arise earlier, and be able to react and overcome these challenges a lot faster.
Assess the changes in budget requirements
An extremely important step in any business-related expansion is the assessment of your current budget and expenses. If you are considering expansion then it is fairly safe to assume that you are regularly and consistently reaching your targets with regard to business growth and profits, which is now allowing for the consideration of expansion. However, you will need to take into account new costs that you will incur while expanding such as employee costs, increased rent, bills, and insurance costs if you change business premises, or even professional fees from consultants and accountants. So, make sure that when you are expanding that you take into account these extra costs and plan them into your budget.
Additional professional help that you will need when expanding your business
Eventually, when expanding your business, you will require some form of professional help in order to run your business effectively and smoothly. A few forms of professional help that you should consider are as follows.
Keeping track of your business expenses, profits, and tax payments can be confusing, hard work, time-consuming, and even problematic if you get it wrong. Not only do you need to consider employing internal help in the form of employees, but often delegating tasks to external help such as accountants is a positive step when it comes to expanding your business.
As the name suggests these professionals are people that you can hire to work alongside you and consult with, they also can help with your decision-making. They often have years of experience and knowledge within their industry and provide invaluable information to the people they work with.
Make sure you and your business are ready for the expansion
Before taking steps to expand, you should ensure you are not trying to run before you can walk. Here are a few things to consider before you take steps to expand.
Your personal circumstances
There is absolutely no point in expanding your business just for the sake of doing so, even if financially and logically the business is ready. If you personally are not in the right place to take the next step in expanding your business, then take your time and do it when you feel ready.
How well your business is doing
This is of course a major factor, if your business is still trying to get its feet off the ground, or if there are issues that continue to pop up that have not been fixed, it is probably worthwhile waiting to get these things sorted before you consider expansion. You want a solid foundation to build your business on.
Before you look into the expansion of your own business, you should consider the state of the market, and conduct some competitor analysis to ensure that you know what you get getting yourself into and who you will be competing against. This not only will give you a good indication as to what challenges you will face but also potentially show you ways of doing things that you hadn’t previously thought of doing. One way of conducting this research is through a SWOT analysis, which stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats.
What strengths do your competitors have? What are your strengths? Are there any pointers you can take from them?
What are your competitor's weaknesses? What can you do to avoid these weaknesses within your business?
How have they positioned themselves in a way to get the opportunities they have? How can you do the same?
What threats do your competition pose? How can you reduce the threat which they pose to you?
There are many things to consider when you are looking into expanding your business, it can be both exciting and daunting at the same time. The most important thing to remember is to be methodical and calculated with the decisions that you take, don’t rush anything, and take into account these tips.