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Practice Management > Building Your Business

The challenge of business growth

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The problem with rapid growth in business is that it exposes many cracks and fissures within a firm. Growing slowly is easy. Rapid growth, however, can be challenging, especially if you don’t have the right service model, processes or staff to handle it.

Many can only wish they had this “problem,” but when you run into it, it’s like a surprise party you’re just not ready to attend. I’ve seen firms that were convinced they were adequately staffed and ready for growth run into multiple challenges when faced with servicing new business.

One way to make sure you’re meeting the needs of all your clients during periods of growth and expansion is to conduct a survey. Survey Monkey (or even an old-school paper survey) can be very helpful in gauging your business and assessing the service climate. 

A client survey might include these types of questions/statements. Respondents would rank you from 1 to 5, with 5 meaning they completely agree with the statement:

1. Our organization is totally committed to the idea of keeping you informed and satisfied.

2. Rather than having to undo mistakes, we seem to do things right the first time.

3. Our organization appears to be committed to the idea of quality.

4. When it comes to our service, we play more of a consultative or partnership role.

5. We regularly provide you with information of value.

6. We maintain adequate contact with you.

7. We make it easy for you to do business with us.

8. Our employees often go above and beyond to serve you well. (Anyone in particular?) 

9. We take the time to answer all your questions.

10. We make it easy for you to contact us.

11. Our employees seem to have a thorough understanding of our products and services.

12. Would you/have you shared information about our firm with anyone else? (Yes/No)

13. If not, why not? 

Sending out a survey to all your clients once or twice a year is just smart business. You may also want to send out a midyear survey to your newest clients.

Growth is something we all want and need, but when your expansion goals are aggressive, your commitment to service needs to be aggressive, too. You certainly don’t want growth to be the reason that growth stalls.

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