Is Your Business Taking You on the Ride of Your Life? by Howard, Date: Nov 16, 2020

Do you feel like an astronaut right now—on the ride of your business life? Unlike so many this past year, your business is soaring to new heights. The question now is—how do you keep it soaring?

In recent weeks, I’ve been discussing five different business phases I call the “5Rs”: Regressing, Rebuilding, Restarting, Resuming, and Rocketing. Today, I discuss the phase we all want to be—and stay—in: Rocketing!

Rocketing is a whole different beast. When you’re rocketing, you are very well-positioned for what’s going on in the market today. You are offering what the market needs from a supply and demand standpoint. And with what you’re offering and your value proposition, you’re rocketing for a reason.

Typically, rocketing opportunities have a window, so you want to make sure you understand your reason for rocketing and build upon it so that you can extend the runway. You can’t take your foot off the gas because you’ll slow down, and others will catch up and grab market share from you—the share that you’re capable of—so you have to take full advantage of what you brought to the market.

Let’s take a look at a few key areas to evaluate and adjust to keep your growth rocketing.

Cash

Your cash system is critical, so this is the first area to evaluate. We know that growth sucks cash. Do you all have all the cash you need so you can make the right decisions, build up the team fast enough, and take full advantage of the market?

If you don’t, you need to ask how much cash it will take to keep rocketing? Where are you going to get it? How are you going to do it? Do you need to raise money? Or perhaps, this is a time you might even consider going public. Consider your options wisely.

Attracting “A” Players

If you’re rocketing, chances are you’re hiring at rates that many companies have never experienced in their lifetime. It may also be that your systems and processes, and even the team you had in place pre-rocketing, are probably not what you need to get the best people in the market to fill your seats. Now’s the time you want to attract those whom I refer to as the “A” Players in the market. After all, if you’re rocketing, you should be the game everybody wants to play, right?

So, are you taking advantage of being a rocket to gather the best talent in the market? And, then, are you doing a good job to have the best onboarding processes to get them up and performing as quickly and as effectively as possible?

The next question is, what are you doing to grow, develop, and nurture that talent to keep them as long as possible? How do you help them excel as your needs grow? It creates opportunities for many of these people, so you need to have the processes and systems in place to be able to move bodies around and create a more enriched job experience for them. It will also allow you to tap into the creative genius of the new employees you’re adding.

Highly-Effective Teams

As you bring on new talent, it’s especially important to look at your team structure. As you move forward, there will be more teams working together cross-departmentally and cross-functionally, so you need to examine how well they function. I think it’s vital to break your teams down and think smaller—and flatter—is better. The key here is to start from the front lines and move up.

I recently read an interesting book, Humanocracy: Creating Organizations as Amazing as the People Inside Them, by Gary Hamel and Michele Zanini, that discusses some great stories about companies that have built their organizations with very flat structures. And they’ve built their organizations to put more decision-making at the front lines rather than create a cookie-cutter formula and try to roll that out across the organization.

So many “traditional” companies are not taking advantage of their talent. And because they view employees in the wrong way, believing that only a few people can make all the strategic decisions and can design the processes, they’re leaving tremendous value and growth potential on the table. And then they throw too many bodies at the leadership and management level, and those leaders and managers self-perpetuate work that does not contribute to the value of your end customer. All this does is destroy your cash and slow down your velocity. It would be best to learn how to serve a market better, faster, better, and differently from your competition.

One final point here: if you have much leaner cost structures to build your company, it gives you a chance to pay your existing employees more because you’re positioning them where they’re adding more value. So it’s a win-win for your employees and your organization, and it gives you that advantage over the competition.

Other Essential Points to Consider

I believe the key to great results is found in asking the right questions. So here are a few other questions you should be asking as you are rocketing.

  • Acquisitions – Is this a good time for an acquisition? Can you take advantage of what you have to share while you’re moving quickly? Are there key capabilities that are holding you back that, through an acquisition, could increase the speed of your rocket? Is acquisition the most cost-effective and fastest way to increase your market share?
  • What are the things that are going to help you to be more scalable? How easily can these things be implemented?
  • What’s the easiest way for us to keep growing at this rate? (You have to keep asking this question.)
  • What are the complexities that you now have the luxury of resolving since cash coming in can now be directed to underinvested areas?
  • What training do you need to put in place to bring new employees up to speed and keep existing ones performing and producing at the top of their game?
  • Do you have the fewest number of right priorities, and then also have the meeting rhythms and metrics to tell you that those priorities are coming to fruition?
  • Do you have a dashboard to help you see as you’re ramping up this company? Are the dials improving, shrinking, or staying the same? What are the dials telling you?

Will Your Rocket Run Out of Fuel?

As I mentioned at the beginning, rocketing opportunities typically have a window. Rocketing companies need to be careful of assuming that rocketing growth is the new norm. So you need to ask yourself what the risks are to this growth stopping? What’s happening regarding the competition in the market, and what’s happening regarding technology? After all, if you’re not staying on top of these areas, you could eventually crash and burn.

To learn more about how to take your business to the next level, order my latest book, The Leader Launchpad here.

One of the best-known examples of a rocketing company that lost it all is Blockbuster. They rocketed up and then ignored the fact that people moved toward digital downloads, thus allowing Netflix to carve into their space and eventually cut them out.

So strategy is still very important in keeping a close eye on the market, your position in it, and how to continue positioning yourself in ways that separate you from everybody else. Always be asking, “What’s next?” so you can continue the rocket growth.

I know there are numerous questions to ask. If you’re not sure you’re asking the right questions, I’d be delighted to have a conversation with you to see if you’re covering all the bases to keep your rocket soaring into orbit. Sign up for a FREE 30-MINUTE NO OBLIGATION CONSULTATION. We’ll talk, I’ll ask more questions, and you’ll gain value from our time. You want to keep rocketing into 2021, and I want to help you do it.