GROWTH ISN’T THE PROBLEM…
You’re not in trouble because you got big.
You’re in trouble because you’re working on the wrong problem.
GROWTH CHANGES THINGS. bigger is different.
If your business got a lot bigger, it’s now a very different kind of business. But if you didn’t change along with it, you end up with problems in three specific areas:
Efficiency/Profit: Sales are good but profit isn’t. It takes too much effort and too much time to get things done and you don’t know why.
People: It’s hard to tell who is and isn’t pulling their weight and hard to know what to do about it. Good people are frustrated, complaining, turning into bad people and leaving.
Quality: You make mistakes you shouldn’t, miss deadlines, or have to kill yourself to get good work out the door.
You can’t win at being bigger by doing the same work you did when you were small.
CRITICAL FACTORs: Fix what’s really broken
You can’t fix problems like these by just working harder or working longer. Growth means more work, more people, more to keep track of and more that can go wrong. Like putting too much weight on a table, too much growth stresses or breaks your existing structures.
Critical Factors is a systematic approach developed with and for entrepreneurs. It gives you a way to identify and prioritize critical projects, creating the infrastructure, skills, and standards you need for the size you are now.
You don’t have to fix every problem or be perfect. You don’t have to “go corporate” and create a re-tape nightmare.
The goal is to strategically attack problems until you get back to a stable, predictable work environment. Growth destabilizes. Your systems stop working and your people have to work harder to get things done. The work focuses on:
Infrastructure: You need efficient ways to gather information and keep track of work.
Management Skills: Your team needs basic management skills in accountability, confrontation, and delegation.
High Performing Teams/Work Culture: Great results do not happen by accident. Effective teams know how to disagree, decide, prioritize, plan, and execute. They hold standards for attitude, effort, and results.
Get to work on the right problems so you can get back to winning.
A detailed paper by Alecia Huck on how to recognize and deal with the infrastructure problems caused by rapid growth.