Happy young european woman sitting on table with laptop and showing peace sign on white brick background with launching rocket sketch. Entrepreneurship concept
Happy young european woman sitting on table with laptop and showing peace sign on white brick background with launching rocket sketch. Entrepreneurship concept

More mindful, entrepreneurial leaders in 2019

We’re on a mission to help people the navigate emerging needs of the modern economy. That means building up the capabilities that are essential for success in today’s business environment:

  • Mindful leadership
  • Innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Customer-centric design

If you’re like most people, these core capabilities weren’t covered when you went to university. Yet, they are fundamental in modern business.

Expand your skill set with a Plato Project workshop. Check out the 2019 calendar (pdf) and join us for a workshop next year.

Grow capability in your team or organisation

Empower your people with a Plato Project team workshop. In addition to our public courses, we have developed a series of workshops to help teams grow modern business capability and new ways of thinking.

Choose from 13 applied learning workshops, which can be run in 1 or 3 day formats, or combined to create a longer, tailored development program.

Team workshop topics

If you organise a team workshop to run before Christmas, and you’ll get two free tickets for a bootcamp in 2019.

Why not pilot an initiative now and hit the new year running?

Get in touch to find out more.

Plato Project and Komosion partner to deliver Customer Experience Design education

Plato Project launched today a new partnership with Komosion to deliver customer experience design education.

Courses will be offered in Melbourne and Sydney, building capability among individuals and within organisations to innovate the customer experience and drive adoption of customer-centric culture.

Plato Project Chief Executive Officer Elissa Newall says the partnership with Komosion highlighted a key point of difference in its modern education model.

“This opportunity places experts and industry professionals, who are actively working with clients on CX, in a supported environment to share their valuable experience with those wanting to learn. In support of that, Plato Project empowers these experts to be great educators and facilitators through our innovative content and learning methodology.”

“Komosion has the know-how when it comes to customer experience but they also share our belief in purpose. We know that organisations need to be able to manifest their higher purpose at all touch points if they’re to have true loyalty and engagement, and Komosion bring that practical experience to the classroom,” says Newall.

Komosion Managing Director John O’Neill says traditional educational institutes have not been able to support businesses in the modern economy raising the need for more relevant education models such as Plato Project.

“What impresses us about the philosophy of the Plato Project is that it had already understood the gap in the market and was already moving to better equip organisations to have relevant skills and a stronger sense of purpose about their roles in the world.”

Plato Project and Komosion are hosting 1-day CX Design Bootcamps in Sydney and Melbourne in November, followed by a 10-week course commencing in March.

About the CX Design Course

As industry becomes more competitive, and alternative options present from all corners of the globe, the most successful organisations are those that offer customer experiences unlike any other.

In this course you’ll develop your capabilities in a variety of disciplines – such as design thinking, user-experience design, product development and service design – to ultimately maximise the competitive advantage your products and company holds.

This course is for entrepreneurs and business leaders who need to increase revenue, maximise customer loyalty and create a market position competitors can’t keep up with.

Learn more at:
https://theplatoproject.com/cx

The future of work is here

The “future of work” and “fourth industrial revolution” are big concepts getting a lot of attention lately. We know that our careers are taking different forms: many of us are working in jobs that didn’t exist five years ago, have side hustles, undertake remote work or are starting to explore new business models. This is the future or work, and it is here already.

Exponential disruption ahead

However, don’t get too comfortable, because this change is only the beginning. We are on the cusp of entering a hyper technological era of innovation, known as the fourth industrial revolution. This is where we will see mass impact of robotics, machine learning, blockchain, automation and internet of things. The scale and potential is not yet fully understood, and that is a little daunting.

While nobody can predict exactly what the world will be like in 10 or 20 years time, we do know that the rate of change will be exponential. Technology is advancing and knowledge is increasing at a greater speed than we can understand. There is no more linearity. Adaptability will be essential to survival.

Empathy, purpose and human-skillls

For some, this future is scary. I’ve encountered people with real fears about losing their jobs or worried about being left behind because they don’t have coding skills or a tech background. The underlying assumption here needs to be corrected: the digital economy is not just for the coders. It’s for everyone. Technological advancement is only one side of the equation, and on the other side is humans creating vision, using empathy to solve problems, leading teams, designing experiences.

It’s no surprise then that the World Economic Forum’s list of the top 10 skills required for work in 2020 is full of people skills. “Complex problem solving” tops the list and “emotional intelligence” and “people management” are not far behind. In the past, work revolved around things that were necessary for survival: toiling the land, undertaking process work. Now we have a greater opportunity to focus on more meaningful work, to align work more closely with our purpose and passions.

Lifelong learning must become the norm

So, where do we start? How do we get from now to next? While there isn’t a secret formula or single path to success, there is an  undisputed view that lifelong learning and a growth mindset are essential. We can’t sit idle.

This is really what Plato Project is on about. While we provide business education, we are also a network of likeminded people who are striving in the pursuit of next. We know that learning is continuous and propels us forward, better prepared for the future and equipped to make the future a better place.

Check out this little infographic, summarising the key themes of this article.

Ask yourself, what is your next?

Future of work infographic

Illustrated by Elissa Newall

If you’d like to know more about this topic, read a bit more about Plato Project’s brand story and you’ll understand why we do what we do. You can also check out our courses, aimed at building capability, mindset and purpose for success in the future of work.

 

 

Dedicated to the pursuit of next

A culture of continuous learning and iteration is essential for organisations to thrive and expand. As Plato Project nears the two-year mark as a business, we continue to put that belief into practice, and keep our sights set on what comes next.

With this in mind, today we reveal a refreshed visual brand identity for Plato Project. It represents the collective learning from within Plato Project since it first formed and captures a sense of the direction we are headed. Importantly, our brand also strengthens and reaffirms the themes and beliefs that continue to hold true.

Here are some of the features of our refreshed brand and identity, and insight into the thinking behind it.

Plato Project is the global network of entrepreneurs, innovators and leaders dedicated to the pursuit of next.

One of the first things you might notice, is that we describe ourselves as a network and no longer as a school. This accurately reflects our belief that traditional, top-down approaches to learning don’t work. We believe that learning is a more organic activity with contributions made from peers, mentors, coaches, instructors and across all settings including the classroom, online and the workplace.

Co-founder and Executive Director Omar de Silva explains: “Learning happens through collective wisdom, shared experience and ongoing activity: what happens as part of the alumni is as important as what happens in the course.”

That’s why we don’t just teach a curriculum. We build up connections and mutually beneficial relationships so that learning and growth continues even when the workshops and classes come to an end. Learning never stops and a network is an intentional word to describe something that is alive, connected, with information constantly flowing between each member.

We have also added global into the mix, reflecting our aspiration to expand the Plato Project footprint beyond Australia.

We equip the world’s most ambitious business talent with the understanding, mindset and capability to constantly strive in their pursuit of next – to do better and be better.

The concept of “next” is a new theme that comes to the fore. It’s an acknowledgement that learning is an ongoing pursuit, and a reminder to individuals and organisations not to sit idle.

The World Economic Forum’s report on Accelerating Workforce Re-skilling for the Fourth Industrial Revolution advocates that “there is a need to understand and change the culture of learning and establish learning as a continuous and lifelong process.” This mindset is what will enable us to be successful as we enter an era of massive technological change.

We spend a lot of our time thinking about the future of work and what individuals and organisations will need to be successful in the future. With rapid changes in technology, business models, and culture, the way we work is undergoing a massive shift. it is more important that ever for individuals and organisations to find a purpose that drives them forward and enables them to forge new paths towards a better future.

Plato Project CEO Elissa Newall explains that there isn’t one road to better. “When we talk about being better, it’s a very personal definition not a wholesale standard that has to be met. We support individuals to achieve their own version of success, to drive their own careers and reach their own personal goals.”

Everything we do is underpinned by our belief in mindfulness, purpose-driven business and entrepreneurial spirit.

When it comes to what we do, and how we work, not much has changed from when the business first started. Mindfulness, purpose-driven business and the entrepreneurial spirit remain core pillars, and for good reason:

Mindfulness

The modern economy demands clarity of thought, and requires us to make decisions that lead us into the future we want to see eventuate. A powerful sense of self-awareness and a commitment to mindful approaches in all we do enables the greatest chance for this to occur.

Entrepreneurial spirit

When you shift the focus of entrepreneurship away from venture creation, and towards creative approaches to problem solving you uncover a mindset that is accessible to all. The future requires people to overcome complex challenges to create their own opportunities, and the entrepreneurial spirit is about having the resilience, flexibility and creativity to do so.

Purpose-driven business

Individuals, teams and organisations flourish as a result of meaningful alignment between personal and professional values, beliefs and ideals. Through a purposeful approach to business, we can unlock better outcomes across social, environmental, self and financial measures.

These values continue to underpin our work, and we acknowledge the large community of friends, alumni, partners and fans who joined on this journey from the very beginning.

Plato Project co-Founder and Executive Director reflects on the many connections made “with those most deeply aligned in our way of thinking, in our sense of purpose and in our ambitions. It’s something which we are all very proud of and grateful for, as it has allowed us to grow into a business which is known.”

This next refinement of our brand aims to help us connect with a broader audience, with individuals and organisations who don’t yet realise the benefits of these core values. This is where we have the biggest potential to impact individuals and business outcomes. It has been important to illustrate the link between our core values and the broader conversation  about the future of work, and building capability that helps organisations succeed in the modern economy.

The brandmark, palette and visual language

For those interested in the symbolism and meaning behind the refreshed visual style, we are keen to share the thinking that has gone into everything you see today:

The brandmark remains with the iconic pilcrow symbol you may already be familiar with. The pilcrow is a paragraph marker, representing the start of a new thought or idea.

The colour palette transforms the previous watermelon and blue combination to deeper red and blue tones. This is a visual cue to signal the strength of the Plato Project offering and make it clear that our courses are hard-hitting and relevant to a wider audience than we have engaged previously.

The imagery has shifted to show pictures of people in their workplace instead of in workshops or classes. We are and have always been primarily concerned with outcomes and wanted to give more focus to the real work environment: collaborating, thinking, creating and leading.

The shapes and patterns have been introduced to illustrate versatility and acknowledge that capabilities are building blocks that you can use to create your individual path to success. There is no one-size-fits-all way to learn or to define success.

The typography has become more bold, placing our bold thoughts and ideas front and centre in everything we share. We have and will continue to have a distinctive voice.

Bringing it all to life

Over the coming days and weeks, we will be refreshing all of the different Plato Project touchpoints and materials. You may have already noticed the new website and socials, and while we work through everything else we ask for your considered feedback on what you see.

“One of the important features of a network is communication, and we truly value the thoughts, ideas and inputs from our friends and members of the broader Plato Project community,” says Elissa Newall, Plato Project’s CEO.

Don’t be shy! Send your thoughts and comments to marketing@theplatoproject.com.

Finally, we are hosting a very special event on 12 July to celebrate the Plato Project network and provide an opportunity for alumni, students, instructors, industry partners, staff and clients to reconnect. Join us for an evening of networking, an inspiration fix and some giveaways. Register via Eventbrite.

PS – If you’re new to Plato Project or considering one of our courses, you are welcome to come along too. It’s a great chance to learn more about what makes us tick, and meet the like-minded, amazing people we work with.

Everyone can adopt an entrepreneurial mindset

We all have ideas. We all see opportunities. At heart, we all have the foundations of the entrepreneurial mindset. We just don’t always see ourselves that way, or realise that the entrepreneurial mindset is relevant even if you’re not starting your own business.

The Harvard Business School definition of entrepreneurship is ‘the pursuit of opportunity beyond resources controlled’. This is where the key challenge lies. The entrepreneurial mindset requires not just a great idea, but a willingness to take action. It means chasing down opportunities with a level of determination and creativity that overcomes the challenges and restrictions currently in play.

The entrepreneurial mindset is not something you need to be born with, it can be learnt. Plato Project is founded by entrepreneurs and works every day with startups, business leaders and innovators. People from any background can cultivate their entrepreneurial side. It’s a core capability needed for the future of work, where success requires being able to survive and thrive in volatile business conditions.

Here is our advice on how to adopt an entrepreneurial mindset:

Define your own success

All over the world, you will notice that there are millions of successful small businesses. Despite what the media tells us, you don’t need to have a massive business to be successful. Entrepreneurship is a path than enables people to define their own kind of success. You become your own boss, you write the rules and set the goals. Entrepreneurs often have a clear focus on what is important to them, and finding that purpose is critical to finding and validating their own definition of success.

Just do it

You might notice that some entrepreneurs are dropouts, or have followed less than traditional career and education paths. Entrepreneurs work with what they have, and often make something out of nothing. This is not a miracle, it’s due to the mindset and the belief that it is possible. And a willingness to try even if failure is a possibility. It’s a very powerful antidote in situations when you are procrastinating, and waiting on something or someone before doing what you want to do. Having an MBA or a promotion at work won’t compensate for belief in yourself or your dream.

Resilience is key

Life is not all fun and games all the time. There are times of struggle, disappointment, loneliness, and sometimes extreme challenge. Entrepreneurs frame challenges and mistakes as opportunities to learn. Difficult situations help you grow and prepare you to take on the next situation with more skill. So, when you face a down time, hold strong and think like an entrepreneur. Adapt your plans, embrace it as a learning opportunity and soak up as much knowledge as you can.

Not everyone is born an entrepreneur, but everyone can develop an entrepreneurial mindset and apply it to their own context at work or in life. Embrace challenges as opportunities to learn. Build resilience and accept failure as a natural part of life. Stop waiting for everything to be perfect, and believe in yourself. Define your own version of success. You don’t need permission to follow your dream. You don’t need to apologise for having a different view. When you see opportunity, go after it!

Got a business idea? Release your inner entrepreneur with our Starting a Start Up program.

Plato Project appoints Elissa Newall as new CEO to lead expansion

Elissa Newall has been appointed as Chief Executive Officer of the Plato Project, recently moving from her senior marketing post at RMIT University to join our team of brilliant and bold minds at the end of January 2018.

Her first challenge is to plot the course for high business growth and to lead expansion of the Plato Project domestically and overseas.

“It’s a gripping new challenge and I am thrilled to be working with the Plato Project,” says Elissa Newall. “It’s such a future-focused and innovative brand, and one with values I truly respect and admire.”

Co-founder Omar de Silva continues with the Plato Project as Executive Director.

“We are delighted to have Elissa on board,” says Omar de Silva. “She is an outstanding talent. A perfect mix of strategic acumen, customer focus and attention to detail – exactly what’s required to drive our next phase of growth.”

Elissa Newall is one of Australia’s leaders in higher education marketing, known for her expertise in digital and campaign strategy, relentless drive and operational rigour. After over a decade in senior marketing roles, she was headhunted by the Plato Project, bringing marketing prowess and strong focus on collaboration to the business.

The Plato Project is the new business school enabling individuals and organisations to develop capabilities for purpose and success in the digital economy. The Plato Project partners with organisations such as REA Group, Broadsheet Media, Carsales and Who Gives A Crap to deliver a range of programs across entrepreneurship, innovation and leadership.

If you want to get in touch with Elissa, reach out on LinkedIn.

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Still reading? Now would be a good time to check out our new program on Agile Leadership & Project Management

How to raise $50,000 in 50 hours.

An eye-catching video first put social enterprise Who Gives a Crap on the map. Word of mouth kept it there.

In our Business Boosters column entrepreneurs share the secrets of their success and what they did in order to achieve scale. When social enterprise Who Gives a Crap set up in 2012, its founders needed $50,000 to begin production. An eye-catching crowdfunding campaign garnered international attention. From there, word of mouth meant the directors could barely keep pace with demand. Co-founder Simon Griffiths tells the story of a start-up with heart.

Social enterprise Who Gives a Crap,  an environmentally friendly toilet paper manufacturer that donates half its profits to addressing water sanitation in the developing world, burst into prominence in 2012 with a launch campaign that went truly viral. In a video that veritably had the puns, co-founder Simon Griffiths said he was sitting down for what he believed in. Seated on his ceramic throne, Griffiths declared he would not be getting up from the toilet until WGAC’s crowdfunding initiative had raised $50,000 in pre-sales, the amount the founders needed to begin production of their recycled paper rolls.  

“We realised we were going to be selling something that was a bit more boring than you would traditionally see on a crowdfunding campaign at that point in time, and we had to do something to get people’s attention,” Simon says today.

Users were invited to check on Simon’s progress via webcam on the Who Gives A Crap site.

“Fortunately that got people’s attention and we got picked up by national print media and television in Australia. We also had great success with media across the United States and further abroad,” says Simon.

“The campaign basically went viral and after 50 quite painful hours we hit the $50,000 pre-sales target. That is how we got started.”

Fast forward to 2016 and Who Gives a Crap employs 12 fulltime staff and has contributed $428,500 to its chosen charity, WaterAid. The company, which Griffiths founded with fellow social entrepreneurs Jehan Ratnatunga and Danny Alexander, is about to expand into the US and the United Kingdom.  

After that initial viral campaign in July 2012, Who Gives a Crap tapped into the power of word of mouth and social media as it sought to grow the business and maximise its social impact. The initial $50,000 was meant to buy enough toilet paper to cover the crowdfunded orders and an additional three months’ sales. Instead, when the initial manufacturing was complete and delivered in March 2013, stock sold out in five days.

“We realised something really interesting was happening, and it was all word of mouth.” – Simon Griffiths

“We weren’t doing any marketing or advertising at all, but as soon as we started sending products out to our crowdfunding supporters, our sales started to double day on day and after five days we completely sold out of an entire three-month supply of product,” Griffiths says.Simon who gives a crap

“We realised something really interesting was happening, and it was all word of mouth. Our customers were taking photos of the product and sharing it on social media and giving rolls to friends and family.”

This prompted a change in the sales model: until this point the social entrepreneurs believed they needed to get their product into supermarkets, but soon they realised there was strong demand for online sales.

“Essentially,” Simon says, “after that initial online rush, we tripled our production and it took us three months to replenish our sold-out stock. The first two years after that, up until July 2015, our growth was all due to word of mouth. We were working out everything as we went, paving the road as we were driving down it, because we kept growing at a consistently rapid pace.”

How to write a great elevator pitch

Thirty seconds isn’t a lot of time, but that’s all you have for the concise, compelling business summary that is an elevator pitch.

Convincing the right person at the right time might make all the difference for your startup. Which is why it pays to master the punchy summary.

While it may be short, an elevator pitch is by no means small. Crammed into that 30 seconds is an explanation of what your business is, what makes it unique and what it hopes to achieve. On top of this, an elevator pitch needs to capture someone’s interest and ensure it’s sustained long after you’ve left.

Because of the sheer amount of information covered in so short a timeframe, an elevator pitch can be harder to write than even the most lengthy and detailed business plan. But because of how often it will be used, it’s crucial to get it right.

Here are three questions to ask yourself to ensure you end up with a great elevator pitch:

What’s the problem?

Your audience needs to walk away from your elevator pitch believing your business leaves the world a better place. There must be something at stake and something to be gained to make your business seem valuable and memorable.

Frame your business as the solution to a problem… there is a problem-solving angle for all businesses.

To achieve this, frame your business as the solution to a problem. Even if one doesn’t come straight to mind, keep thinking – there is a problem-solving angle for all businesses. Once you’ve identified your problem, find a way to present it in a relatable manner that can be quickly and easily grasped.

Why you?

Just as important as presenting a problem to be solved is explaining why your business is ideally placed to solve it. If this connection isn’t made, your audience will be left wondering why your competitors can’t do it or, worse, why they can’t do it themselves.

Identify your unique features and what makes them efficient and effective, explaining clearly and concisely how they solve the problem. At the same time, touch on the shortcomings of other existing approaches to the problem and why yours is different and better.

Who cares?

Put the audience first. They need to be excited about you and your business for your elevator pitch to stick, so go for the rousing and inspiring. Where possible, use narratives to engage people on a deeper level. Avoid anything negative – keep it constructive, affirmative and optimistic to create lasting positive associations.

Put the audience first. They need to be excited about you and your business.

At the same time, ensure your language serves your audience. Cut the dry jargon that slows speech down and use natural, plain English. Don’t get bogged down by boring nouns but draw on punchy verbs that convey action and results. Meet your audience halfway and make it easy for them to understand, remember and care about your business and what it does.

‘Getting Shit Done’ with Adam Jelic of Mi Goals

It’s the beginning of the year, and the momentum is high. Everyone we know is setting New Year’s resolutions and creating new habits with the hope that a fresh start will change their old ways. Before we know it, it’s February, and our motivation has waned – sound familiar?

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Meet Mi Goals, a Melbourne-based inspirational stationery brand, empowering people to set meaningful goals that they will stick to and achieve.

 

Mi Goals started as a side project, and was created by Adam Jelic who came up with the idea  as a result of being frustrated with the fact he couldn’t find any products on the market to help him set his goals and get shit done. “I was after an aesthetically pleasing planner that would help me set my goals and keep me motivated all year round.” says Adam, reflecting on his frustration at the time. “I had a daily planner, a separate notebook for my notes and then I was writing my goals on scrap bits of paper, I just wanted everything to be in one well-designed book”. Adam set about turning his goals into reality.

It was an idea Adam had been thinking about for years; he finally decided to take action and reached out to high-school friend and graphic designer Alec Kach to help him create the Mi Goals diary. “I remember Adam showing me his mocked-up version of the Mi Goals diary”, says Alec. “He had typed it up on Microsoft Word and printed it out for me so that I could further understand the vision he had”. Alec is now the Creative Director and Co-Founder at Mi Goals.

From that moment it was all systems go. Adam wrote up a list of retailers he wanted the diary to be stocked in and would cold call each retailer to see if they would be interested in the Mi Goals diary. To his delight, the retailers loved the idea, and in 2010 the Mi Goals diary went to print and had 800 units stocked throughout 10 retailers Australia-wide.

Fast forward seven years and Mi Goals products are in over 250 retailers across Australia and New Zealand, with their range expanding to include different sized Notebooks, Progress Journals and Bucket List books. Since 2010, Mi Goals has helped hundreds of thousands of people to create a life they love and get shit done.

“Our goal is to build a global movement of empowered individuals living life on their terms. More people are becoming proud of their ambitions and aspirations in life, and our products are helping them turn their big dreams into actionable plans”, says Adam.

MiGoals_07 (1)

Adam and his team draw inspiration from products they wish existed in times they felt they needed guidance, which is why each product has a coaching element. By doing so, Mi Goals is striving to help people become the best version of themselves. “Too many people are living in the expectations of their friends, family and society. The average human lives for 28,000 days so we want to help people realise that they deserve to live a happy and fulfilled life. It’s never too late to get started on that passion project you’ve had circling in the back of your mind, or that goal you think is too big. We want to help people grow and get our of their comfort zone by trying new things that will help them find their purpose. We firmly believe that everyone has the power to create a life they love, and we have the tools to help get them there”.

Mi Goals has innovated the goal-setting process by ensuring each product has an immediate action plan with sections to reflect and monitor progress. “It’s important to pause and acknowledge how far you’ve come and see where you’re spending your time and energy. It also makes you accountable”. The Mi Goals logo is a progress bar which emphasises their focus on personal growth and development.

The unique layout of Mi Goals diaries features quotes to keep you motivated, space to set a key focus and goal for each week. There is also space to create and work on new habits with an explanation on how to use their diaries, so you maximise your use and ensure you get shit done.

Mi Goals community of doers are called Goal Diggers, a play on words from the Kanye West hit song which has inspired a new product they are launching on Kickstarter in September.

“We want to create a global movement of motivated individuals through a product that will help people find their purpose, create a vision for their lives and become the best version of themselves. We have spent months planning and developing this new product and feel it is our best work to date”.

 

To be the first to find out more information on their empowering new product sign-up to their mailing list here.

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Want to get shit done? TEAM GSD is Mi Goals community of doers who get access to FREE downloads, exclusive discounts, access to new products and the best productivity tips and tricks. Get productive and join TEAM GSD here. 

Six signs it’s time for your business to expand

Not too soon, not too late – learn to read the signs before growing your business.

Expanding a business can be the best and also the worst thing to happen to an enterprise. Do it too soon and you’ll be overstretched and under resourced, but leave it too late and you’ll be left behind. Knowing when to take the leap isn’t just guesswork. Here are six sure-fire ways to tell if now is the right time to expand your business.

Steady profit and cash flow

Consistent profitability is both an indication that you’re doing something right and a warning not to squander it. While a comfortable present is safer than an unknown future, a steady profit stream can suggest a healthy business model that’s robust enough to work on scale. If you’re still unsure, a stable cash flow not only provides indication that you might be ready but also offers the financial foundation required to find out.

Customers are loyal and satisfied

Customers may not always be right, but it’s worth paying attention when your customer is telling you to expand. A loyal and satisfied customer base will provide ongoing demand through repeat business and word-of-mouth recommendations. If this demand is already outstripping supply, then expanding your business is the next sensible step. But even a strong and steady growth in your customer base, along with the capacity to continue delivering the quality responsible for this growth, might mean you’re equipped to capture a larger market.

People and processes are robust

Your business might be ready to expand, but your people and processes must be ready too. Increased responsibilities and workload involved in expanding a business will mean having to lean heavier on your staff and systems. Smooth and streamlined processes and an independent, dependable team can provide the support needed to help carry your business to the next level. Better yet, robust protocols can be duplicated and dedicated employees can add unexpected input and value.

Your industry and market are growing

While focusing on the minutiae of your own business, keep one eye on the broad factors and trends affecting your industry and market. Growth in these areas can help identify opportunities for your business to grow along with it, increasing the chance of a successful expansion. At the same time, scrutinise the behaviour of your competitors for any otherwise unnoticed indications of industry and market movements.

You can identify opportunities for economies of scale

Expanding your business isn’t just about getting bigger, it’s also about getting smarter. With size can come cost advantages through volume discounts, specialisation and increased efficiency. These economies of scale can not only reduce your production costs, but can also be passed on to your soon-to-be grateful customers.

You have done your research

Even if all the other signs are saying it’s time to expand, hold off until you have a comprehensive understanding of your business, your customers, your industry and even yourself. Expansion isn’t for everyone, and expanding too much or too quickly can bring down even the best business. If you’ve done your research thoroughly and come to the conclusion that your business is ready, then that’s the strongest sign that it’s time.

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