I talk to a lot of business owners and most of us want our businesses to grow. Growth is a good thing. More revenue allows you to do more of what you want to do in your business and life.
But many of the business owners I talk with are frustrated with the lack of growth in their organization. I’ve noticed some common themes in businesses that aren’t growing.
1. You don’t know the magic number
I will ask, “What is the most important number in your business?” Most of the time they can’t tell me.
The most important number in all of my companies is recurring revenue. This doesn’t mean it has to be yours, but if you can’t tell me what number is most important, you will probably not be growing.
2. You don’t have a coach
I will ask, “How much money are you investing in coaching and resources?” Their answer often determines how fast the organization is growing. This isn’t ALWAYS true, but it’s true the majority of the time.
You will never be able to “afford” a coach. It’s never the “right timing” to pay money for coaching. You just have to do it if you want to grow.
3. You have a lot of ideas
When leaders of stuck businesses start telling me about all their ideas, I get nervous. You can’t pay your mortgage with ideas. Ideas are overrated if you can’t execute them.
Ideas only work if you work them long enough. If you keep bailing on your ideas after a few months because they aren’t getting traction, YOU are the problem, not the idea.
4. You create more products and services before mastering selling what you have
Creating more content isn’t going to fix your information business. Creating another free report isn’t going to help you get more leads. Writing more code isn’t going to help you grow your tech firm.
Create less and sell more. More stuff will make your business worse, not better.
5. You don’t have a growth goal
I’ll ask, “How many of those do you want to have sold in 12 months?” Most leaders can’t clearly answer that. If you want to grow, know exactly how much you are going to sell and by when.
In 2011, I made our team create NOTHING NEW until we sold 500 subscriptions to Giving Rocket (a membership program for church leaders).
We hit the number. It’s not magic, it’s focus.
6. You do too much yourself
You say, “I don’t have enough money to hire help.” I say, “You will never have enough money to hire help, just do it.” If you don’t take the risk to get some help with things that distract you from selling more and growing your company, you will stay stuck.
7. You lie to yourself
When organizations stop growing, leaders start blaming. You start hearing things like this:
- “We’ve outgrown the team we have”
- “We should focus on health more.”
- “We don’t really want to grow anymore than this.”
While some of these things may be true, the reality is this. You are the problem. I’ve personally experienced this. Outgrowing our leadership is common and when it happens we should just admit it. Quit lying to yourself of why the company isn’t growing and look in the mirror and say, “This has outgrown my leadership, but I’m going to hire some coaches to help me grow.”
If you keep blaming, you will stay stuck.
Have you experienced any of these in your business or another business? What else do you see keeping businesses from growing?