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Growth and Scaling Downfalls – Part V Final Thoughts

In the last few posts we touched on Growth and Scaling preparations in terms Human Capital Management, Financial Resource Management, Strategy Management and Project Evaluation Management. In the last post in the series we will touch on additional practical considerations.

Limitations

All said and done, there are many limitations that are outside the control of any organizations including market and competitor behavior, consumer perceptions, external stakeholder objectives as well as rapid innovations. Those and many other factors that shape the overall perceived and real “business environment” that will inherently have an influence on the outcome of any business related project. Hence it is vital to account and plan for certain margin of error that will dictate changes, adjustments and pivots.

Expectations Management

Though a stable tool of business management, expectations management is one of THE most important yet clearly underutilized component of scaling and growth projects. Drawing on the idea that there are inherently many more unknowns in those projects that can lead to limitations, it is extremely vital to utilize both the theoretical and practical aspects of expectations management theory.

Diminishing Returns

Growth is NOT unlimited nor is Scaling. Contrary to the belief that there is no ceiling to expand and grow, the reality is much different. As mentioned previously, the sheer fact that are many components outside the influence of an organization, it is rather logical to see why there are real life limitations. Hence it is extremely important to start off those growths and scaling projects with reasonable outlook and goals.

Business Process Engineering (Reengineering)

When limitations and expectations management are accepted and implemented, process engineering and reengineering become indispensable. In line with other component, business process management, engineering and reengineering have an even more outsized role when it comes to scaling and growth in order to address and accommodate both the limitations and expectations management.

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Growth and Scaling Downfalls – Part III

 

In the previous post “Growth and scaling downfalls-Part 2” we discussed human capital aspects of a scaling project. The next topic on the scaling preparation “to do” list is strategy.

Though strategy is understood to be a vital part of any business project, when it comes to scaling and growth, it takes an entirely more fluid role: both macro and micro strategy have to be substantially more adaptive and flexible.

Macro strategy

Though the term is more widely used in financial industry, it similarly applies to the concept of business strategy at large. For this discussion “Macro Strategy” is to be understood as the “general strategy” that defines the overall approach based on organizational philosophy, culture, goals and methodology. In context of growth and scaling, “Macro Strategy” similarly refers to general organizational approach both in theory and practices as how to approach any given project.

So, why does it matter?

Essentially, the macro strategy will dictate the overall approach through the lens of organizational mindset; which includes factors such as cultural, social, structure and flexibility. It can also be shaped by outside factor such as target market, brand perception as well as industry specific norms and standards.                                                                        

For instance, an organization that is dead set on market domination is less likely to be deterred by its competitor’s abilities, approach or resources. Hence, the Macro strategy may have an oversized impact on the initial planning of growth and scaling.

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Growth and Scaling Downfalls – Part I

Many of us have either been part of a “growth and scaling” project or have led such efforts. We all have some battle stories of what worked and what didn’t; yet we hardly ever hear about the preparation that goes into a successful “growth and scaling” project. In this series, I will address several of more important considerations and factors.

The Beginning

Scaling and growth both as principal as well as in practice are simply a function of evolution: a given organization reaches some specific benchmark that leads to a need to grow the business. Those benchmark can be as objective as following a road-map that specifies steps or as subjective as the executive team deciding it is time. Without exploring the details of the decision making, let’s look at one of the most fundamental factors: The Team.

The Evolution

Even without extensive business experience, logic simply dictates that growing or scaling a business can only be successful when the said business has the resources, i.e. human capital and financial means. To keep the discussion on point, I will forgo discussing the bootstrap version of this topic. 

Human capital or the team that is going to be in the front line of those growth/scaling efforts needs to be able to execute the directives that are designed to stimulate and augment the overall growth path. In order to do so some basics, have to be in place:

• Quantity: the team size has to be realistically feasible in relations to the workload

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