Businesses follow a common path of development as they grow.
Each stage of business development has its own unique challenges to overcome and requires different management skills.

There are three main stages of business development:

  • Startup
  • Adolescence
  • Maturity

The 3 stages of business development

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How to identify your stage of business development

The above sales turnover and staff numbers are just a guide.  We have worked with businesses with 120 staff, that are still at the adolescent stage.

The best way to know which stage your business is at, is to review the below challenges, and see which group you identify with the most.

Start-up Challenges:

  • Surviving!
  • Finding sales opportunities
  • Converting sales opportunities
  • Managing cashflow
  • Juggling many hats
  • Appearing professional
  • Dealing with the admin/paperwork
  • Overwhelm! Everything is new

Adolescent Business Challenges:

  • Getting the work done – properly and profitably
  • Dealing with the chaos of growth
  • Staying informed
  • Reducing errors and waste
  • Unclogging the bottleneck (you!)
  • Delegating to your team
  • Coordinating your team
  • Developing your team
  • Increasing ownership and accountability
  • Addressing undesirable work

Mature Business Challenges:

  • Managing your complexity and size
  • Communicating a unified direction
  • Aligning your different business units
  • Turning strategies into day to day, ongoing results
  • Engaging your people
  • Achieving synergy
  • Staying agile and continuing to grow

Solutions for Start-up Businesses:

  • Focus
  • Identify and target specific sales channels
  • Streamline your sales process
  • Ensure your pricing is profitable
  • Track your sales pipeline
  • Forecast your cashflow
  • Simplify and delegate admin tasks
  • Avoid reinventing the wheel
  • Get a trusted sounding board

Solutions for Adolescent Businesses:

Programme for early adolescent and adolescent businesses

Programme for adolescent businesses

Programme for mature businesses

The irony of Start-up Businesses:

Many people start their own business to ‘be their own boss’ and be able to do things their own way.

While having your own business does provide a lot of freedom, the start up business finds itself with less autonomy than expected as it says ‘yes’ to most customer requests to get a sale.

Being able to do things your own way, can also be quite tiring as the startup realises they need to do everything, including many things they haven’t done before.  Building a support network around you can make this easier.

The irony of Adolescent Businesses:

Management probably doesn’t come any harder than this. 

At a time when you are starting to develop your management skills you are required to have a far greater understanding of management than a manager in a larger, more established business.

This is because you are not only managing on a day to day basis – you are also setting up your management structure, team and systems in your evolving business so it can continue to grow profitably.

The irony of Mature Businesses:

Just when you think you have made it to the top and you can call all the shots…Surprise! You will need even greater collaboration and enabling skills.

A large business is a hairy beast with lots of complexity.  It takes clear thinking to understand how all the parts work best together and even clearer communication, to explain it all.

As the leader, you need to be able to articulate a clear identity and direction for your organisation in a way that everyone can understand and identify with.  Then you need to ensure that your management team and systems facilitate alignment, collaboration and achievement by all your units, departments and people.

Would like help with your business development?

Contact us now