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Driving Change: How Empowering Individuals Can Shape Our Future
While much is written about frameworks, finance, and technology when talking about growth strategies and start-ups, so much is down to the people involved. Business leaders make the difference happen, people drive change.
Skills and Attitudes
Entrepreneurs are the driving force behind creating and growing new businesses. All too often, they are also the people holding them back.
The abilities that can help you launch a business are not the same as those you need to help it grow. It’s vital not to fool yourself into valuing your own abilities too highly. The chances are that you’ll need the training to learn the skills and attitudes required by someone who is leading growth.
To grow your business, you need to learn to delegate properly, trust your management team and give up day-to-day control of every detail. It’s all too easy to stifle creativity and motivation with excessive interference. As the business becomes more complex, you also need to develop your time management skills and learn to focus on what’s really important.
People Drive Change
As your business grows, you may need to bring in outsiders to help. You’ll want to delegate responsibility for particular areas to different specialists, or appoint a non-executive director or two to strengthen your board. As you start tackling a new opportunity, someone who has experience in that activity can be vital.
For many successful entrepreneurs, learning to listen to – and take – advice is one of the hardest challenges they face. But it may also be essential if you are going to make the most of your opportunities. Some entrepreneurs, recognising their own limitations, even appoint someone else to act as managing director or chairman.
Complacency can be a major threat to a growing business. Assuming that you will continue to be successful simply because you have been in the past is very unwise.
Regularly revisiting and updating your business plans can help remind you of the changing market conditions and the need to respond to them. See the page in this guide on planning ahead.
An up-to-date growth plan helps you identify what action you need to take to change your business and the way it operates, for example:
- Changing to suppliers who can grow with you and meet your new priorities. As your business grows, consistent quality and reliability may be more important than simply getting the cheapest offer.
- Renegotiating contracts to take account of increased volume.
- Training and developing employees. Your own role will also evolve as the business grows. See the page in this guide on skills and attitudes.
- Make sure that you keep up to date with new technologies.
You need to be fully committed to your strategy, even if it takes you out of your comfort zone. This may involve hard decisions – for example making employees redundant or switching business away from suppliers you have become friends with. But unless you’re prepared to do this, you risk putting your business at a dangerous competitive disadvantage.
If you are looking for some assistance to help you explore your growth plans get in touch with us today.