Scaling the Business is one of those conversation topics that will most likely stir up as many different takes as people you’re talking to. What is it, exactly? Who does it and why? How is it helpful?
The first time I’d ever heard of the concept of scaling was in Adobe, a company that, by any definition, is a scaling machine. And the concept would come up often in conversations and I’d find myself wondering about it, trying to figure out answers to the questions above. The general theme of my dozens of conversations with managers and leaders in Adobe on the subject of scaling was this: whatever it is that you’re doing, make sure anyone can use it or benefit from it, one way or another.
Now you can imagine how encompassing the concept of scaling actually is. So let me point out situations in which you’re scaling your business, without necessarily knowing it:
- you prioritise your work and your calendar reflects it
- you share your work
- you design efficient business processes that can be quickly adopted by any part of your business, not just your team/department
- you set agenda, roles and timing for any meeting and actually stick to them
- you improve the way your team/department/company communicates
- you adopt virtual learning methodologies and systems, to which anyone can enrol, from anywhere, at any time, needing only a laptop and internet connection
- you go from pen & paper to digital
- you encourage people to adopt a set of values and behaviours that you role-model yourself
Basically, you’re scaling when you think and act in terms of: from one to many, faster, easier, better, company-wide, common good, common values, negotiable and non-negotiable. You’re scaling when you adopt standards of excellence in your daily life, at a profound, individual level. The company is only the sum of people comprising it, so the level of excellence of your company is determined by the level of excellence in each individual in it.
In their book, Robert I. Sutton & Hayagreeva Rao offer real, concrete and applicable advice and practices for you to help your team/organisation get bigger and better and faster. No matter how big you are. Every approach they offer is wonderfully backed up by the most appropriate real-life stories that will exemplify whatever it is they are presenting. This book will get you started on scaling yourself and your business. Consciously.
You can find the book on all major reading apps and book stores.
In the end, I’ll leave you with a question on the current state of your company’s ability to scale: Presuming your business grows in a very short period of time and given the state of your internal culture and processes (people & business), how fast, easy and productive would you be able to integrate 25% more new people (hires), needed to support the business growth? What about 50% more people?