Your Small Business is Your Baby
To most small business owners, no matter whether you live in Denver, CO or Indianapolis, IN they see their business as their baby. And we all want better for our children right? The life cycle of a business follows the same maturity and growth stages of a child. This post will discuss each of those stages and how to get the most out of each cycle, while also, extending the lifespan of your business.
The four growth stages of a business life cycle are:
Understanding Each Phase of Your Business
This is generally consider the technician’s phase or the craftsman’s phase, which is the owner. At this early point, the relationship between the business and the owner is that of a parent and new baby. There is an impenetrable bond that is necessary to determine the path your business will follow.
This phase requires constant vigilance and monitoring. Much like making sure your baby gets regular feeding and staying up late nights figuring out what is going on, but also, that as a new business owner, you are still riding high and don’t mind spending every waking minute with “your new baby”. I can go on and on about the similarities of becoming a new parent and having a new business, but I believe you can get the analogy here. The key is to know your business must grow in order to flourish. You cannot stay in this stage forever, it isn’t healthy for you nor your business to stay here longer than necessary.
Responsibility, decision making and lots of learning define this stage. In this stage you need to start bringing your support staff together to delegate to and allow growth to happen. You begin to test the limits and explore what is possible for your business. This cycle belongs to the manager. The plan stage needs to start and a relationship should be built with the entrepreneur or owner, to have a vision for and plan for the future.
There’s a point in every business when business explodes and becomes chaotic. This is referred to as growing pains. It’s a good problem to have, but a problem that cannot be ignored (or unexpected) nonetheless. You are often faced with a number of choices:
- Avoid growth and stay small (safe and comfortable)
- Go broke
- Push forward into the next cycle
The last cycle is maturity, though this doesn’t mean the end of your business. Your passion for growth must continue in order for your business to succeed. You need to keep an entrepreneurial perspective in order to push your business forward.
Through this phase you continue to grow and decision making becomes easier because you have more experience. By this point you have surrounded yourself with good coaches and advisors. You have a strong trust in the business and the staff you have put in place. The business needs much less of your time and more of your wisdom.
You see how all three of these cycles are connected and depend on a strong foundation for each one of them for your business to be and continue to be successful. All three of your key roles must also work together to work through these cycles.
If you’re having trouble putting together your business life cycles and figuring out which of the key roles you fit into, try our FREE test drive and work with one of our amazing coaches. Contact us today to schedule your Strategy Session.