Although rapid growth is both desirable and enviable for a young company, it also comes with its own set of challenges and difficulties.
In its early days, the business is artisanal, working at a more or less defined pace where the final result is the only preoccupation. As rapid growth comes along, it becomes imperative to convert these disorganized work habits into industrial processes that will sustain the expansion of our company.
This transition will rely on a firm and precise vision that is communicated to every key player within the company by top executives. It then becomes the main focus of the members of the middle management team that will continually transmit and reinforce this vision within their respective divisions or departments. New employees are immediately briefed on the vision and the direction of their new company, and everyone works together by following a company guideline that is both strong and stable. Over time and given how fast things are moving within your business, the vision and the company guideline may be forgotten. It is therefore essential to remind everyone on a regular basis, from the Vice-President to the new employee, of their existence and importance.
A flawless company guideline will lead to the creation of clear objectives that are both understandable and feasible to the various teams within the company. When growing as a business, it’s important to divide our main objectives into smaller goals that can be achieved in the short and medium term by every team.
Having objectives that are too wide will halt our progression. Like a climber in front of a mountain, the journey must be segmented in order to better prepare the climb to the top. That principle applies when maneuvering the expansion of our company. We have our vision and our company guideline as well as the long-term objectives that flow from them. To achieve them, they must be divided into achievable goals for the weeks and months to come.
To achieve these steps, it is essential that we can count on a management team that is determined and motivated. As stated previously, middle management is responsible for communicating the vision and the company guideline to the entirety of the employees, and their level of engagement will transfer to everyone within the company.
Growth will lead to additional responsibilities for middle managers, which means that they must be loyal allies for upper management. If we do not feel a strong unity between upper and middle management, changes needed to be made quickly in order to develop stability within our management team. Once that stability is in place, it becomes easier to communicate and more importantly implement our culture across our business and our employees.
The industrial pace set forth when experiencing rapid growth means that things will move very quickly. The management teams needs to follow and of course implement this new pace within the company as a whole. We have to motivate the troops, lead by example, and remind everyone of the importance of not slowing down regardless of the challenges that now stand before us. That way we keep our competitive advantages, acquired it’s true during a slower period in the history of our company, even after having accelerated to the speed required by rapid growth.
Our company’s growth will lead to new opportunities that will present themselves while we are busy managing our expansion. These new opportunities bring with them additional risk that we will make bad decisions. That’s when the entrepreneur must turn to his or her instincts and always rely on them when the moment has come to evaluate the pros and cons of each opportunity that is offered. It is not possible to completely eliminate risk, but upper management will have learned that already. They therefore need to accept risk and face it with confidence, all the while smoothly avoiding any situation that can hamper our young company’s growth.