Paul Graham, one of the most famous entrepreneurship writers, defined the term ‘startup’ as the company that is facing an exponential growth. Successful tech companies usually fit this description, but the term is not tied to any business niche or industry. Any company can be defined as a startup if it shows an adequate growth in the first development cycle.
The fast growth also brings certain challenges. Many first-time entrepreneurs are running their operations from their homes, completely unprepared for the swirling success awaiting them. Fast business growth requires you to scale up your business. This process is easier said than done and it needs thorough planning, large investments and plenty of time. In this article, we have listed some of the common growth problems, and the different hacks startups use to overcome them. We have focused on the problems that arise in two critical growth cycles.
1. Building your dream team
In the early stages of the business development when companies still can’t purchase expensive tech solutions, entrepreneurs often need to rely on the human capital. Employees are often characterized as the company’s most valuable asset, but it is very hard to find both talented and motivated individuals who are ready to invest their time in developing a business operation from scratch. Since entrepreneurs are not able to offer high salaries and great benefits in the first phases of business development, they should focus their job search on recent graduates and people with no work experience. If finding an experienced employee is necessary, entrepreneurs should try to make a partnership by offering them a part of the company’s shares.
2. Building customer trust
Many newly-founded companies have problems with getting the initial validation within the target consumer group. The biggest marketing question of them all is how to your customers. Commercial offer is huge and entrepreneurs need to think of the unique product or service that will set their company apart from its market rivals. The best way to get the necessary customer validation is by offering great value for money, competitive prices or unique sets of benefits. Sometimes, even when laying the foundations this way during the seed stage, companies won’t get the planned return on investment immediately, but entrepreneurs should continue with this strategy until they build a solid customer base.
3. Hiring more people
When expanding your business, your hiring strategy shouldn’t be much different from the one you used for building the initial company team. Entrepreneurs should look for the same qualities in the new employees and check whether they would go along with the already established company culture. Today, since knowledge is widely accessible through online courses and many people easily obtain a degree in different fields, you should focus on candidate’s skills, rather than on their formal education. You will easily find dozens of candidates who are great at what they do but don’t have the appropriate university degree to back up their knowledge.
4. Organizing your team
Big teams are not easy to organize, especially if some of your employees work remotely. In the first phases of company’s development, you will need to hire many remote and freelance workers so that you can cut back on the office equipment and commuting expenses. The best way to organize an extended team that includes members who are working from remote locations is to use reliable team collaboration software. These software solutions allow you to efficiently assign and schedule tasks, communicate with your employees and exchange documents, spreadsheets and other types of files.
5. Choosing the right office
In the seed stage, many entrepreneurs choose to run companies from their homes. Today, choosing this type of office setting is easy, because advanced connectivity allows us to work from any place. Still, after you decide to hire more employees, you will probably need to find a suitable office space. There are many types of leasing options you can choose.
Coworking spaces are probably the most scalable office solutions out there. If you rent a few desks or an office in the coworking space, you will be able to scale your leasing package in accordance with your business growth. Apart from desks, chairs, and computers, coworking spaces offer a wide variety of other amenities. This often includes printers, scanners, fax machines, and the use of conference rooms, meeting rooms, video call boots, etc.
6. Branding your products or services
The branding is necessary for building a steady consumer base and keeping your customers loyal. You will need to invest a lot of money and time in making your products and services more attractive to the target audience. If you are selling products, start from creating a fancy logo, inscriptions, and packaging. Don’t forget the copywriting side of the branding process. Choose motivating and attractive slogans and use them for promoting your offer both online and offline. Most new startups don’t have copywriters and graphic designers in their team. They hire them on freelance marketplaces like Upwork, Fiverr or 99Design. If you like the work of the designers and copywriters you choose, you can build a steady relationship, and add them to your remote team.
You also should not neglect the digital side of branding your products or services. We all know how much time people spend online, and these people could become your loyal customers with the right approach. As a startup, you may not have all the know-how to market your company on the internet. This is why a Digital Marketing Agency can be so helpful. Rather than ask a current employee who may not be qualified to take on more work, which could lead to severe burnout, find a dedicated agency. In doing so, they will be able to put all of their energy into spreading brand awareness and make your service stand out both on the internet and in the real world.
Although business growth brings many new challenges, it is a necessary component of every successful business story. A fast company growth will turn you into an experienced entrepreneur, who is focused on the results and knows how to overcome challenges and solve common business problems. So, the challenges you face on your business journey will help you become a better entrepreneur.