How do you know when you’re ready to scale?

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If you’re constantly working more hours than you can manage, with more work than you can handle, you’re probably standing at a big and risky business crossroads right now.

Perhaps you feel like you’re bumping your head on an income ceiling…because you’ve completely sold out your only finite resource – your time.

Or perhaps you simply hear lots of other business owners talking about how they scaled and transformed their business, and you’re thinking: I’d like some of that – but how do I do it?

There are broadly two ways you can scale your business. One is to carry on delivering the same products but on a bigger scale. This might mean expanding your bricks-and-mortar shop into online sales, or moving from hand-made products into machine production, or simply growing your team so you can handle more orders…and so on.

And the second way to scale your business is to shift from selling yourself to selling products. This is called leverage, when you take the skills and expertise you sell to one client at a time (in person or online) and productise your knowledge into tangible things you can sell over and over to an infinite number of people…all at the same time, while you sleep, without having to deliver it yourself.

Whichever of these applies to you right now, you need to be able to answer the same question…

“Am I ready to scale my business?”

Because scaling your business is not without risks. It’s a transition – and in any transition, there’s a fulcrum of time in which you leap from a proven way of doing things into something new and different. The way your business runs – and feels – is going to change when you scale.

In fact, some studies show that scaling at the wrong time, or scaling badly, is one of the biggest reasons why small businesses fail. Perhaps it’s not surprising that many business owners hesitate to do it. But, on the other hand, if you don’t scale your business, you will reach a revenue limit and be held there. (And if you’re watching this video, I guess it’s because you’re ready to play big, and grow your business from where it is now.)

So how do you know when you’re ready? Look for one (or perhaps more) of these four clues:

  1. You’re turning work or clients away – even the interesting work and the lovely clients. Isn’t that one of the most heart-breaking things for a business owner to do? It’s the ultimate example of the expression ‘leaving money on the table’, and it‘s not just the money you’re turning away, it’s the future possibilities and opportunities that might come with that client relationship.
  2. You’re so busy being the operations manager for your business that you don’t have time to be the CEO. Of course, there are administrative things that need to be done in any business to stop the wheels falling off. But if you’re not spending enough time on high-value stuff like strategy and creativity, your business is going to grind to a halt at some point (wheels or no wheels).
  3. Your forecast and your reality don’t match. One of the reasons you need a good handle on your figures, besides knowing where you are on profit and loss, is to show you where you’re going. And if your financials show there is revenue growth to be had, or is needed, but you’re not achieving it, it may well be because your current business model is reaching its trading limits.

And fourthly, quite simply this – you’ve run out of time. If you sell your services on a one-to-one basis, you need to be honest and know that all you’re selling is your time. (Your expertise is simply the reason people choose to buy your time.) And time is the one resource you cannot expand or replace – so if you’re selling your time, your business has a cap on it…unless you scale your business.

Now, if any of these make you nod your head in vigorous agreement, the exciting news is: you’re ready to scale!

You need to know that when you scale your business, you change practically everything about it – how you do things, how it feels to work in your business every day, the results you get. But scaling is an investment in your business, and you need to make sure you get the right returns on that investment. Getting it right is crucial, not only for your long-term results but also to make sure your business is something you love, even as it grows and changes.

So if you want to make sure you’re ready to scale…and if you’re excited about boosting your business to new heights…and if you want to know more about great coaching and mentoring can help you create the solid roadmap you need for scaling, let’s have a conversation. Because if you’re serious about your business, so am I. Send me a DM and let’s connect.

If you’re standing on the sidelines looking in and you’re not sure whether I’m the person to help you, a great place to start is here. I’ve created a series of free downloads that will help you get moving and will give you an introduction into me and my work.

When you’re ready to take the next step, I’ll be right here…

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The steps I've taken to go from 'just starting out' in 2017, to reaching £1M+ in revenue in 5 years.