Very few fast-growing companies build their organizational infrastructure in advance of the growth. If the right people and right systems are not in place, the organization suffers (profits don’t keep up with growth, there is a sense the business is rudderless, employees are constantly putting out fires, etc.). My role is to help entrepreneurs address the predictable challenges of growing a business. Together, we explore the following areas:
Create the vision
Every leader needs a vision for his or her company—not just the Steve Jobs or Elon Musks of the world. A vision paints a picture of what you want the company to look like in the future. It provides a sense of purpose and direction, and helps define short- and long-term goals.
Construct the business roadmap
Once the vision is established, it's necessary to construct a roadmap on how to get there. A roadmap outlines key business growth projects as well as important deadlines for the organization. It should be updated regularly as conditions change..
Build a great team
The accomplishments of a focused team can never be matched by those of any one individual. In his classic book Good to Great, Jim Collins states that a leader's main priority is to get the right people on the bus and the wrong people off the bus. Teams may need to be upgraded as business grows.
Define the culture
Highly engaged employees translate to satisfied customers and business success. Money is not enough to motivate employees or get them fully engaged. A high-performance culture does not just happen. It must be built, nurtured, and constantly lived.
Optimize the operational systems
One of the main reasons people buy a franchise is because there are established operational systems in place. Think about McDonald's with its processes for financing the franchise, hiring and training employees, running the kitchen, etc. Entrepreneurs need to design, document, and continually improve core operational systems.
Design the org structure and define roles
Many growing companies add workers in an ad hoc manner. Employees don't know who they report to or have a clear understanding of their role. Proper organizational structure leads to higher retention, increased morale, greater productivity, and better communication.
Establish a communication rhythm
Lack of communication causes organizational issues. The right meetings, with the right agendas, facilitated in the right manner will support communication and alignment throughout the organization.
Commit to growing as a leader
Businesses don’t grow, people do. There is a direct correlation between the leader’s commitment to growth and the company’s success.