Have The Gurus Been Lying To You About Business Growth?

business business growth business strategy growth successful change Oct 12, 2022
Truth about business growth
 
Have the gurus all been lying to you?
Have you heard the news?

 

Apparently, we can all be millionaires, I mean if you ignore the cost of living crisis, the UK being in recession and all kind of other world issues, Yep, now is 100% the best time to scale your business.

 

OK…let's take a step back for a moment and look at this with our sensible hats on.

Did you know according to Gov.uk, there are more than five and a half million trading businesses in the UK? However, can you guess at how many of them are generating more than a million in profits each year?

It may not be as many as you think…. as more than 4 million of those businesses don’t even have a single employee…. nope not one, despite being responsible for 77% of the growth seen since 2000 in the UK.

Now I am not saying you can’t make a heap of money by yourself as a solopreneur, the point I am trying to make is there are significantly more one-man (or woman) bands out there doing their thing than there are BIG profit making corporations.

But maybe not as many are making the leap from lifestyle businesses to larger more sustainable, more impactful companies that have a life beyond that of its founder/owner.

Ever wondered why that is?

It is something that Oakwood Management are slightly obsessed with investigating and addressing.

You see, the majority of ventures that make up the UK business scene are actually SME (small to medium size enterprise) and more specifically the lion's share of those are microbusinesses.

For the first time in a long while in 2021 the UK unsurprisingly saw a significant decline in business, the majority of which were sole proprietors…. the most vulnerable dealing with a global pandemic right? Especially seeing as microbusinesses are increasingly being started by women, and women were disproportionately impacted due to childcare responsibilities often landing on them in the main.

So, when you see all these internet marketers promising you exponential growth in the next 6-8 weeks, you know the type…the “It’s your time” and “you obviously don’t want it enough” crew, just pause for a moment and look at what it is they are promising and to whom.

 

business guru thumbs up

 

Now I am not saying that there are not opportunities for business growth right now, for women and men alike, even as a solopreneur, sole proprietor, microbusiness, after all many big household named businesses, and successful business owners have been born out of or thrived in previous recessions and crisis’, but I think we need to be super diligent and look at the language being used when it comes to business growth for the majority of small business owners.

 

  • Does scaling REALLY mean scaling, or does it simply mean making more sales?
  • Does business growth REALLY mean business growth, or does it mean building capacity for future growth?
  • Does success REALLY mean success, or are the metrics being measured not even the ones that are important to you?

This stuff matters.

 

When it comes to accessing advice, support and strategic help in your business you need to ensure that any suggested business solution has the right level of expertise and experience at its core, for your type of business specifically, and I’m not just talking about the sector you are in, but the kind of business you are trying to grow, the business leader you want to be, and the values that you hold dear?

If you have a lifestyle business right now, one which you are proudly at the helm of, one that is very much wrapped up in your personal brand, then the advice you need around scaling will be very different to a business which has been structurally designed to be a legacy business.

If having time to pick up your kids from school is a non-negotiable or having to manage a chronic illness is the reality of your situation, then an all systems go growth plan might not be the way forward.

We go into business for so many different reasons, and all business advice is not born equal.

 

five cacti representing different businesses

 

So here are 5 things to consider when thinking about your next steps in your business growth journey:

 

Imagination…

Are you able to picture in your minds eye where you want to take your business? What the end goal is, or even the next landing spot? Are you allowing yourself to think bigger?

Insight… 

Do you understand the current and future challenges and opportunities for your business based on REAL data, and quality feedback from your customers, suppliers and staff (if you have them?)

Ideas… 

Do you have or are you able to come up with innovative and validated solutions, methodologies and plans for getting to where you want to go? Are you being creative and/or bold enough?

Implementation… 

Do you have the capacity, skills, knowledge, time, and resources to take action on the solutions you have come up with, and if not do you know how to acquire these?

Impact… 

How will you know when you have been successful? What will be the key metrics for success, what will you measure and how will you measure them? And will you build these into the business from the start?

 

Look.

You know your business better than anyone else. You also know yourself as a business owner, better than some stranger off the internet. So, listen more to your own intuition and knowing about what your business needs next, and be OK with knowing there are gaps.

Any professional service or individual you bring into support the gaps in your business, should be just that, support. They should add capacity, insight and challenge, but you should be at the head of any decisions about the future direction of travel.

Otherwise, we just all get caught up in the hype…. working towards goals that are not even ours.

The business growth consulting division of Oakwood Management headed up by Julie Creffield works with small to mid-size businesses in a no-nonsense way to support them on their growth journey.

Helping founders, and CEOs to spot and fill the capacity and knowledge gaps in their business, and to help them leverage their best assets when it comes to making the most of future growth opportunities as they arise.

Our NEW Lifestyle to Legacy programme is for entrepreneurs who are serious about scaling their business, but know they have gaps in their knowledge (the how), are perhaps lacking a bit of confidence (the who they are to do this) and haven’t really explored the full extent of the opportunity (the why).

The programme has a small cohort size and is delivered in engaging online sessions with full resources, 121 support and consultancy. This is not an online course, rather a bespoke coaching, training and mentoring solution.

If you’d like to find out whether you are a good fit, email [email protected] to receive a PDF brochure outlining the content of the programme and the costs. Or why not book in a call and have a chat direct.

The first cohort of this programme starts next month.

 

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