Growing your business is an organic process that doesn’t just sprout overnight. However, there are certain steps that entrepreneurs can take to accelerate growth. If you’ve been trying to grow your business, but not seeing much success, maybe you’re stuck in a rut and/or not operating as effectively as you could be. Here are a few reasons you’re not growing as quickly as you want to:
While most of us carry smartphones or mobile devices around every day, not everyone is using them to their full potential. If you’re only using your phone to check social media or check your emails, you’re not leveraging the all the advantages business-based apps have to offer. According to Benchmarks for Small Business Growth, only 18% of small business sales teams and 13% of small business service teams report having mobile apps for employee use, compared to 30% (sales) and 32% (service) among larger companies. Kick your growth into high gear by testing out some apps that can simplify your work day and make you more productive. Here’s a good place to start:
Not to say that you should completely abandon your business know-how, but the smartest businesses know that relying on instinct isn’t sustainable. You need to have solid information showing you what is and isn’t working, and you get that by establishing key performance indicators (KPIs) and by measuring and tracking results. As new analytics tools have become more accessible, making data-driven decisions is available to workers of all skill levels and to companies of all sizes. With data at their fingertips, small businesses can work intelligently, accessing reports and dashboards that provide real-time insights that are useful to their business.
When you’re running a small business, you don’t have the kind of large marketing budgets to pay for expensive advertising or to send your sales team to every event around the world. You have to be much more strategic and targeted in your movements to ensure maximum ROI. One of the best ways to gain new business is via referrals. Referral selling expert Joanne Black explains that when salespeople receive referral introductions to decision-makers, they secure new clients at least 70 percent of the time, yet many salespeople don’t ask at all or only ask once. If you’re still hesitant to ask for a referral, try asking for an introduction instead.
It’s understandable. If you’re operating sometimes month-to-month, with limited resources and time, you’re not exactly jumping to take on something new that could turn out to be a complete bust. But if you look back on why you launched or started working at a small business, you’ll find that it was all about the calculated risk. You knew there would be challenges and you stepped up. To experience growth, you need to harness that same kind of entrepreneurial spirit, take a measured risk, and embrace opportunities that come your way. Take it from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, “The biggest risk is not taking any risk. In a world that's changing really quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail is not taking risks.”