Crucial conversations for entrepreneurs and investors:#4 Managing Growth

24 Feb

Crucial conversations on managing growth

Isn’t it wonderful to experience the excitement of a growth spurt? However, a boatload of new customers that adore your products usually means that you have to ramp up production. And, when your company was featured in a national newspaper you had even more happy and excited customers to service. To keep up with the increased demand you add a number of new employees to your team. Life is good for the entrepreneur that experiences growth. But as a wise person once said, “If your output is more than your input, then your upkeep will be your downfall.” In other words you have to plan for managing growth!

The prudent entrepreneur will be willing to engage in a number of crucial conversations to consider hazards of managing growth such as these:

  1. Financing growth – are the funds available to increase production so that you can make good on promises to new customers?
  2. Facilities – is your current office/plant large enough to accommodate extra machinery, staff, etc?
  3. Customer service – can you keep your current clients delighted with your service or will they be sacrificed on the altar of progress? To maintain the current customers, will you need new staff?
  4. Your own management capabilities – do you have the expertise needed for managing growth, manage more employees, work out financing and legal agreements, and find innovative solutions?

Meeting and overcoming these obstacles is crucial to your company’s longevity. Likely you will not do this on your own. What experts should you call on to help with managing growth as you transition from small to large? Typically, every entrepreneur has good relationships with a number of bankers, lawyers, accountants and business coaches or consultants. Each of these specialty resources provides the wind beneath your wings.

For example, lawyers and accountants are important for structuring contracts and number crunching. However in my experience, many of them do not have innovative ways of thinking that help entrepreneurs come up with creative solutions to the problems of managing growth. Likewise, while you always want to keep your banker informed of plans to advance the business, his or her hands may be tied by bank policies around what the bank is willing to finance. On the other hand, a business coach or consultant with a roster of clients that have overcome similar problems can share this knowledge with you and help you craft creative solutions that lawyers, accountants and bankers can help you implement.

I highly recommend that entrepreneurs investigate the informal boards of directors provided by organizations such as GroYourBiz and The Executive Council (TEC). As a participant in groups such as these, you will receive monthly input from other like-minded entrepreneurs that both faced and surmounted similar challenges. Through crucial conversations around that table, you will get (and give) trusted feedback and solutions. Moreover you’ll be held accountable for recognizing the issues you face and implementing solutions to them. This will give you a leg-up in growing your business and help you optimize the expertise of your other trusted advisors.

Assante’s Wealth Planning Group
Crucial conversations with your Financial Advisor may cover a range of issues such as:

  • Wills and Powers of Attorney
  • Capital gains exemptions
  • Protecting assets in case of marriage breakdown
  • Leaving a legacy

As an Assante Advisor, I have access to our Wealth Planning Group for the delivery of wealth management solutions to clients and prospective clients. This includes individuals and families with sophisticated and complex needs requiring depth of knowledge and experience in multiple disciplines.

Drawing on the expertise and advice of specialists in the group, they develop detailed wealth plans and reports. These incorporate financial planning and risk management strategies, tax planning strategies, and wealth transfer strategies needed to solve any estate and succession planning issues.

If you own a business, you might be surprised at the complexity of your wealth planning needs. It’s never too soon to get the assistance of our Wealth Planning Group that can help you both envision and implement strategies for the future sale of your business or transfer to the next generation.

Using experts to manage growth:
It’s just good advice.