Imagine: Your small business is taking off, and your company starts growing. You're overjoyed and filled with well-deserved pride. But something feels a little off. There are suddenly more responsibilities and pressure to support your business's growth. You're feeling a little overwhelmed, and doubt starts to creep in. If you're anything like us, you may even feel pangs of imposter syndrome--did this happen by accident? Can I really do this? Well, we're here to assure you that yes, you can! Check out these three easy tips to manage growth and run your small business like a pro.
1) Stay Organized
Staying organized is hands down the most important thing you can do to maintain your business's growth. Keeping track of all of your business documents maximizes your time and ensures that your finances are on the up-and-up. Without formal organization, invoices may get lost or go out late. There are a multitude of resources to help do this. While Quickbooks is the "gold standard" when it comes to bookkeeping, it can be pricey. If you are looking for a good way to organize and send invoices, we suggest Zoho Invoice (it offers a FREE plan!). It's also important to organize your space and inventory. It's easy to lose track of paper documents and supplies, especially if your business revolves around your creation or manufacturing of inventory. Having everything in its proper place can significantly maximize your time and minimize stress. Being a pro also means keeping track of customer feedback and support. Make sure your website and/or social media presence provides an easy way for clients and customers to reach out to you. Keep a record of client interaction so that you're able to communicate effectively and incorporate their thoughts, comments, and questions.
2) Create SOPs
A Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) is a step-by-step outline for various aspects of a business. With a specific outline, tasks and projects can be executed with consistency. Depending on your brand, this may sound very formal or unnecessary. However, regardless of your business, creating a specific outline for tasks is a great way to hold yourself (and/or employees) accountable. They also help to keep things running if you need to step away from the business for any period of time. Before creating your SOPs, you need to ask yourself, "what is the goal of this task?" Think about which parts of the process are essential to reaching that goal and how they need to be performed. This may sound obvious to you, but articulating the purpose of the task will help to write the outline. Next, ask yourself who will be reading your SOP. The format you use needs to make sense to that audience. Depending on what works for your business tasks, an SOP can be a flowchart, a simple bulleted list, or hierarchical steps--more detailed lists that break down each step as specifically as possible. When articulating the procedures, include the goals of the task, terminology, roles and responsibilities of employees involved in the process, and ways to judge subjective decisions that need to be made. Before officially establishing SOPs, test them out with employees (or friends!) to make sure that your directions make sense to other people.
3) Outsource Specialty Tasks
When you hear the term "outsource," what comes to mind? For many, it may conjure images of a warehouse or packed office space filled with unknown workers. You may associate outsourcing with losing control, losing some of your business's identity, or losing money. None of these things have to be true. The key is knowing which parts of your operation can and/or would benefit from being outsourced. A specialized professional would be ideal for handling anything regarding finances and taxes. Rather than struggling to make videos for your social media accounts or website, professionals can create something with ease. At Angela Wolf Video, we assure that your business looks professional while maintaining its unique personality! This kind of outsourcing frees up your time and energy to focus on what's important for your brand. It also helps keep the aspects of your business that are out of your wheelhouse, like finances or branding, professional and easy to manage.
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