You’ve heard this popular expression. Now while I believe it’s true, there are myriad definitions of growth and many ways to think about how to sustain the lifecycle of a business. Perhaps the most important thing for small business owners to remember is that by staying lean, and remaining open to conversations with peers and customers, you will always have a steady flow of good ideas that will benefit your company and/or prevent a catastrophic impact on the cash flow of your entity.
Revenue and profitability are obvious indicators of growth. Yet, there are less financial-statement-driven benchmarks and statistics that a business owner should also consider — particularly when a company is in growth-mode. Reviewing statistics on fulfillment distribution channels, keeping abreast of current lifestyle trends and techniques, and taking stock of the culture and goals of your organization are some of the non-financial ways to keep your company and yourself challenged — success notwithstanding.
The questions that business owners and service providers should be asking themselves are:
– What are you doing to make yourself more sticky with your end user?
– Are you changing your expense structure from primarily fixed in nature to variable in nature?
– Has the pandemic had a positive/negative impact on your business?
– Are you looking at changing trends and techniques in society and capitalizing on ways to increase value?
Companies like Zoom and Peloton, whose market values have grown exponentially since the pandemic, continue to search for ways to enhance growth and prevent their competitors from gaining any market share. Zoom’s management is determining whether their workplace subscription model can be applied to a customer service fulfillment option for B2C companies. Peloton has recognized the opportunity to sell workout-related merchandise like sneakers and athletic wear.
These are just two examples of what companies are doing to enhance their business model to reflect changing times and to make themselves more relevant to consumers, even when things are going “well.” Business owners need to challenge themselves by keeping on top of current trends in their industry in order to stay relevant with their customers. Status quo is no longer enough. Entrepreneurs must evolve and may have to step outside of their comfort zone in order to do so.
Take-away: There is no place for complacency in the business world — now or ever. You must continue to focus on your customers and add value in order to thrive in the “new normal.” For a free diagnostic on your financial and non-financial reporting aspects of your business, feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Co-founders & Managing Partners