Every entrepreneur, regardless of the size of their organization, wants their business to scale and be more successful. For many at the early stage, this can seem like an impossible feat.
Every business owner I’ve ever encountered, no matter their level of success, wants more impact, influence and income. It’s the fundamental motivating reason many (perhaps you) made the decision to become an entrepreneur in the first place.
The disheartening reality is only one in five entrepreneurs will attain a level of impact and influence in the marketplace that will fuel their efforts to scale and transform their business beyond the early struggle stage.
Of all the challenges that face entrepreneurs in the early phase of their business growth, the most difficult to overcome is the unending clutter and noise of our hyper-connected social media driven marketplace.
The 21st century marketplace is a slush pile of white noise. Standing out and apart from the herd of competitors and influencing the behavior of customers, clients, stakeholders and markets is a tall order indeed–no matter how big or small the enterprise or the marketing budget.
The key to scaling your business requires you first develop a foundational strategy to have more impact and influence in your marketplace.
For early growth CEOs, particular those with $1-10 million in revenue, these are the issues keeping many of them from effectively scaling their enterprise:
- more organizational clarity and confidence in their strategic vision
- attracting and retaining the right talent
- building a disciplined, customer-focused culture
- innovating new value in the marketplace
- the capacity to efficiently deliver high-value experiences to higher value
- elevating the quality of their presence in the marketplace
- creating relevant differentiation for competitive advantage.
I call this challenge: “The Scalability Factor”.
When CEOs in the early growth stage of their business think about how to scale their business, typically their thinking is focused on employing management systems and processes designed to facilitate “scale”– defined as the ability to generate exponential revenue from a well-managed and fixed cost base.
In other words, their primary goal in scaling the business is to build a well-oiled machine that is self-managing and does not require an increase in operational cost and complexity to produce more top line revenue. No doubt this is of critical importance. But this puts the cart before the horse.
In my view, operational systems and processes are of little value to the organization that has little impact and influence in the marketplace.
CEOs who focus solely on operational efficiencies will not scale effectively without first creating value that has a significant impact in the lives of customers and scales their influence to enjoy competitive advantage.
To scale an early growth business in our cluttered and noisy 21st century marketplace, entrepreneurs will need to focus their energies in mastering the four pillars of the scalability factor:
Strategic Brand Development
Impact and influence in the marketplace is the foundation upon which to build your bigger future and take your business from early struggle to greater success.
I’ll be going into much greater detail on these four pillars in future posts.