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07 Apr 2020

5 Stages of Small business growth


In my morning reading I found this great research article in the Harvard Business Review – https://hbr.org/1983/05/the-five-stages-of-small-business-growth. It was written originally in 1983! But as with most good empirical research, I find it still very relevant today.

In my personal entrepreneurial journey and with my clients, I have been looking to understand how businesses grow, and what common factors lead to success or failure. This article provides a great perspective, with a sensible and applicable model for business owners to use in order to understand their situation.

I’d be interested to hear if you agree and in which stage you find yourself and your business. We can only truly maximize our opportunities if we educate ourselves on all factors impacting our potential. And develop an honest, impartial assessment of what needs to be done to attain success.

I plan on going over this research in more detail but for now, my first key takeaway from this research is this:

  • Know yourself
  • Know your business
  • Know your market

Take an good honest look at those 3 areas and consider your goals, abilities and constraints in each. For example – are your goals in each area aligned? i.e you want to solve a need in the market, but are your personal goals and business goals currently working in that same direction? If you look again, your current business goals may have diverted from addressing that need, as a result of financial pressures or personal factors.

Additionally, consider your abilities, your business capabilities, in acheiving your goals. Do you currently have all the tools you need, and are you using them?

Finally, know your market. What is the need you aim to address? What is the problem you are solving? And how are you doing it in a manner that justifies your continued business existence?

If you’d like to discuss this further and take a dive into your business situation, please get in touch. I’d love to help you get on your way to maximising your business success

5 Stages of Small business growth


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