Starting a business is a brave and wonderful experience as it provides opportunity of creativity and expressiveness. It involves lots and lots of hours input, hard/smart work, thinking in and out of the box, competing with existing competitors and being relevant. The excitement of starting a business is what seem to drive a new SME business. However, when the excitement is over, drive, determination and result kicks in, which keeps the wheels going.
A point comes when the business need to expand and grow. Business growth or expansion can come in different ways, which can be:
- By tender,
- New ideas/products
- Demand and supply
- New money injected
However, when a business expands rapidly, too fast too soon, it can be for the positive but if not careful can have a negative result.
Few years back, I worked with company that provided training to the private sector. During this period, the company operated from a modest space and functioned within it’s capacity. After several attempt of trying to win contract within the public sector it finally did. This resulted to a change of space, more staff, man power and resources. This was not to last long because the new expansion was the down fall of the company. As of today the company fail to exist and has debt to pay. I learnt a few lessons from the company:
- When business growth is too fast, too soon, it might not be best for the business.
- Do not get carried away with the new injected finance and over spend.
- Prioritize what is important in your business and spend accordingly.
- Do not take on too many additional personnel.
- Do not create a new lead position just because.
I enjoyed the article from Juile Hall, Why I Close Down The Women Unlimited Business Club. It’s a good read because it talks about business expansion and knowing to quit or down size when it does not turn out right. As a business person, it can be scary to fail, but I read somewhere that F.A.I.L. is First Attempt In Learning.