Growing Your Business Safely

Growth is an important priority for any business. Planning for growth allows you to anticipate problems and you can avoid or survive them. It lets you weigh up the different options for developing your business, and choose the right one for you – for your business type and your personality, and most importantly it lets you come up with contingency plans for some of the difficulties that even successful expansion can bring with it.

The risks of failing to grow are well understood – you miss out on opportunities that your competitors get to take advantage of, and will slowly be squeezed out of your place in the market. You also have to look at the risks of failed attempts at development: a new branch that closes too soon, or a product that’s launched amid a huge fanfare only to fail to find an audience and vanishes without a trace are both public, visible failures for your brand. Once you’ve been seen to fail, the damage to your brand can be hard to shift.

Growing your business safely means building research and reflection into your plans – you need to confidence to pursue your goals, but if that confidence isn’t tempered by accurate data about your chances of success, then you could be setting yourself up for a fall.

If you’re planning to launch into a new market, then confidently following through on those plans could see you building up a big boost to your revenue, and give you lots of opportunities for future expansion. If you don’t partner up with specialists to get the international research that gives you the data to base your plans on, you run the risk of pouring money into an endeavour that can’t pay you back!

You need to know, first of all, that the demand for your products and services exists in your new market. If people don’t want, or can’t afford, what you do, then it’s a waste of time trying to sell to them! Even in markets very similar to your base, it’s worth finding out about the competition: demand for your brand could be low if there are businesses already supplying that need at a similar quality and cost.

Another area you need to research – and this is where dealing with a lawyer, accountant, or business consultant that specialises in this new region – is the legal (and financial) responsibilities it brings with it. If you’re not operating in compliance with the law you could see some big fines which put your business in danger, or even find yourself barred from doing business in that country altogether!