Thinking About Growing Your Business? Tips For Ensuring a Dynamic Expansion

Thinking About Growing Your Business? Tips For Ensuring a Dynamic Expansion

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Revisit Your Business Plan

Where did you begin? After all, it is difficult to move forward without knowing where you came from. Go back to that valuable document that you initially utilized to get your business up and running. Evaluate how much you've evolved since then. See if there are any fundamental changes you need to make. This original blueprint can give you some important insights as you prepare for a business expansion.

Planning for Your Business Expansion

After figuring out where you came from, the next step is to create a map for moving forward. Really take a look at what areas of the company need to be expanded and consequently review your organization's readiness in this respect.

What we mean by "readiness" is, have you met certain criteria that in turn necessitate a change by way of growth. Some things to consider:

You've Outgrown Your Space

This is a pretty fundamental one. If you feel crammed into tiny quarters, if employees are working on top of one another then it very well may be time to move into a larger facility.

Your Customer Base is Solid

Whatever expansion plans you might be making, it doesn't make sense to do so unless your customer base is solid and preferably growing. There is a great deal of security in a loyal clientele and you really don't want to move forward without this.

Demand is Outpacing You

The demand is rolling in—this is great! But if you cannot keep up with it whether by virtue of production or labor force, then it is probably time to hire more employees, purchase more inventory, and amp up your resources in general.

Steady Cash Flow

Expanding your business is going to take capital. You need to make sure that you have the necessary money coming in, that you are getting paid and collecting those invoices. If not, and if there is more going out than is coming in, then you may want to hold off on any such expansion projects.

Market Opportunities

Of course, you want to ensure that the opportunity exists. Do your research. What is the climate of your particular market? Is the industry growing? If so, then moving forward with expansion makes sense; if however, it is shrinking, you may have to rethink your plans, perhaps even adjust your business model accordingly.

Top Notch Employees

Behind every good leader is an amazing team. Are your employees ready to expand? You perhaps more so than ever will need to rely upon them during this time. Let's say you're looking to open a new location, one or more of them may be taking the lead there. You need to have confidence in your staff and know that they can handle the job.

Vital Steps to Creating Growth

There are certain measures, documents, and procedures that should absolutely be put into place before you decide to go ahead with your business growth plan. Determining whether or not you are in fact ready for such an expansion can in part be assessed by creating and subsequently reviewing the following pieces of information:

Executive Summary

This will in essence outline your expansion strategy. It will incorporate all expansion efforts across the board and summarize the process along with the expected end results. Consider this document to be, in many ways, your expansion blueprint.

Purpose

You probably did this once upon a time while creating the company. Now you want to revisit your mission and purpose and reevaluate based on the impending expansion. Consider for instance how this will give you a leg up on your competitors and also what impact this will have on your ability to attract and keep customers.

Products and Services

Again, this is something you want to come back to and redefine in terms of your expansion plans. Detail how your products and services will be impacted by the growth; also outline any benefits your clients may get as well.

Marketing Strategy

This is critical. When expanding you obviously need to bolster your advertising/marketing efforts. What is your strategy here? How will you make customers aware of your business growth? Also, don't forget the basics, such as where will this increased marketing budget come from? And how will you ensure that customer experience stays strong?

Business Organization

Inevitably with any type of expansion, there is usually some sort of restructuring as far as key players are concerned. If you have investors, they are going to want to understand exactly how this new organizational structure is going to function.

Operations

Here is where you provide a close look at the before and after as it were. How has your business run up to this point and what will change upon expansion? Again, you want to make sure that there is a seamless transition as you grow your company.

Success

Part of expanding is being able to show how you've succeeded thus far. As you move into the final portion of your growth plan, you want to demonstrate the success your business has experienced so far. Paint a clear picture of your progression, list achievements, and show why expanding just makes sense for your business at this point.

Financial Projections

In order to prepare for your expansion, you are going to have to make some projections. Based on what you've done in the past, and where your financials currently stand, you need to create forecasts regarding cash flow, projected yearly profitloss, productivity, and overall cost analysis.

Understanding Expansion Strategies

When you do make that leap into business expansion, you are going to have to take some time to really analyze the evolution of your company thus far. This certainly is not a bad exercise. When expanding your small company, it will take a great deal of work—make no mistake about it. And numerous moving parts really do need to come together to make it go smoothly. Is this a risk you're willing to take? It may definitely pay off big time, as long as you tread carefully and do your due diligence in the lead up to this expansion project. At First Union, we offer many loans like short term loans, lines of credit, and financing options that can help businesses. Call today!

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