Entre-journey is not a sprint but a marathonNimisha Gupta
Any Entre-journey is not about stepping on a treadmill; rather it often feels like you have boarded a disbursement train which refuses to slow down. The pace just gets faster and faster. It’s a journey which starts with nothing more than a eureka moment, in anticipation of making a mark in just one stride.
However, the second you kick-start your journey, the very next minute you start draining your bleak resources, be it for hiring or research and beyond.
Scaling is the foremost goal which every entrepreneur seeks for. You would want your tomorrow to be more successful than your early years. Scaling certainly gives a sense of momentum regarding which you can’t crib about the outlay. The golden question isn’t, ‘how do I scale my business?’.
The question in contention is ‘how do I scale my business at the right pace to accomplish my dreams?’Scaling too slow or too fast opens unforeseen avenues for entrepreneurs which they are not prepared to face.
Out there are many entrepreneurs already, who have successfully proven that it is not impossible to tame your pace. Let’s walk through the experiences of the ones who made it and the ones who failed.
• Know When to Hire the Right Cooks
‘I can do it all’ is now an old-school mantra. Being self-sufficient does not suffice the pretext of growing slow and steady. It propagates your inefficiency for a clever play.
One basic rule towards scaling, is not to bring the right people to work but know when is it the ‘right time’ to introduce a set of new hands in your startup.
They could be two or three or more. When hiring, you need to be very choosy about both the right kind of people and the number, based on the strategy crafted to solve the challenge.
Hiring too many cooks in the kitchen at once will not guarantee you a fast scaling, rather it creates a situation where you have too many people making decisions and offering inputs only because they have to.
Keep your team small, crisp and precise. It is quoted, “The purpose of hierarchy is to destroy bad bureaucracy”- CHRIS FRY. All successful entrepreneurs believe in the importance of introducing small and nimble new blood in the start-up forms the core of the scalability in the right direction. This time the pace modulator is in your control.
On an average, a team of more than five members, makes your start-up vulnerable to a set of problems which are not worth your efforts. Coordination and reconciling the ideas, eat up a lot of time.
• Know When to Pivot Your Inner-Self
In entre-journey, many start-ups have to go through this phase, where the number of employees exceeds a half century.
This situation is addressed as ‘Entrepreneurial crisis’ by research conducted by Standford.
You as the founder need to recognize such a crisis in your startup and take actions to mitigate the risks associated. You need to pivot your leadership style. From a friendly, intimate and a personal management style, you are required to adopt a formal and professional one.
The key is to pivot right and slow. A sudden change might create an unhealthy work environment. Going from one mode to another with the set of same employees will not be easy. This is something you have to be strong headed for, personally. Your leadership style should be such which sets a perfect tone for everyone in your startup.
• Know When to let the Right Content Float
Start-ups are no longer created in a vacuum. From the day you put down your dream or that mere figment of your vision on a piece of paper to start off, you officially open your doors for the world.
Your start-up has both an inward and an outward appearance, which you continue to project. The best way to scale during the lifecycle of the entrepreneurial journey is to adopt a dedicated marketing strategy.
During the transitional phase, be very particular in crafting the type of content you put out into the world at all times. The marketing strategy should be in line with the growth process. It not only engages your customers, but bring them closer to your core. Bring your customers on the same page by making them feel special.
Same applies to the internal material you create. The employees need a proper outline and a future vision of growth you are trying to sustain.
Lastly, Scalability is all about striking a right balance between where you are and where you foresee yourself. Scaling is not a sprint. However, there is a possibility to get winded too soon if you fail to plan at the outset.
Entre-journey is a long journey which requires patience and consistency. It is a marathon, where you need to maintain your stamina throughout the journey.
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