This article was written by:
Lewis Robinson, Business Consultant and Writer.
While micromanaging can be a big mistake, business owners still want to avoid losing control over the various aspects of their business. Having little control can result in your business growing too fast or spiraling downward, both of which result in significant problems that could compromise your business. Here are some methods you can employ to stay firmly in control.
Finance As Much As You Can On Your Own
Business loans are often unavoidable for entrepreneurs looking to start a company, but if you can start small and grow your business without getting loans for investors, you should. Not only will this avoid putting your business into debt from the beginning but it will also let you retain much more control over your company now and in the future. If you don’t have investors to please and pay back, the decisions you make for your company won’t be influenced by their needs and preferences. This approach may not be viable in all circumstances, but it is worth considering if you can, especially if retaining control over your business is important to you.
Surround Yourself With Good People
As your business grows, you are not going to be able to run every aspect of it yourself and will need to start surrounding yourself with good people. These need to be individuals you can trust, who also believe in the values of your organization. You must avoid trying to control these people and instead trust them to make decisions you also think are best. They should be communicative so you can be aware of what is going on and make changes accordingly if you believe them necessary. Surrounding yourself with good people will allow you to keep tabs on the different operations of your business while still being able to delegate tasks to others. You may be able to learn useful things from them as well, such as sales manager skills.
Implement Growth Control Measures
Most business owners would love unbridled growth but the fact is it can be a problem. If your company is growing faster than you are prepared to handle, it can result in unmet demand, angry customers, overwhelmed employees and many other problems. You need to ensure you remain in control during this growth period. You can do this by slowly increasing production, the number of clients you take on and new employees you hire. Don’t let growth outpace the capabilities of your team and production processes. Before making major decisions, be sure the growth you are experiencing is not seasonal or just a freak occurrence.
Closely Monitor Finances
Not controlling finances correctly results in the downfall of many businesses. You should enlist a good accountant who can keep track of your finances and offer solid advice regarding spending and revenue issues. Take a vested interest in reviewing your company’s budget and compare it to monthly expenses. Be prepared to make changes if you notice revenue slowly decreasing over time. Keep money in mind when you make business decisions and never make purchases you do not have the money for. Save some back as well to cover lean periods or unexpected expenses.
You want to make sure that you carefully protect your rights regarding your company’s intellectual property by making the correct registrations and writing tight contracts. Partnerships can be a major benefit to your business, but any deal can potentially present its own set of problems. Be sure to read all agreements carefully and consult an attorney so you understand what you retain and give up in any agreement. Be prepared to play hardball at the negotiation table. This is the company into which you have put so much work and effort—avoid signing that away, even if the alternative is risky.
Maintaining reasonable control while still giving employees freedom to be creative and make choices that will benefit your business are key skills all entrepreneurs should have. You must be able to delegate tasks while still being aware of everything that is happening at your company. Retain key rights and you can remain in control of your startup as long as you wish to.
Lewis Robinson is a business consultant specializing in CRM and sales. He’s helped start several small businesses. He currently spends his time as a writer and personal consultant.