Today we are going to talk about how to scale a company for growth. There are three main considerations for the CEO in thinking about how to scale a company. They are people, processes, and systems. I’ll tell you right off the bat that most CEOs I talk to don’t even like to talk about most of these things, because they don’t sound very interesting. They sound like bureaucracy. They sound like things that we are not doing as a smaller company. Why do we need to do these things to grow, to be a larger company? This is what we are going to talk about today.
Hiring the Right People to Scale Your Company
The single most important thing a CEO can do to scale a company is to hire the right people, to think about what is the organizational design and where do they put people, and what kind of people they need in each part of the organization. Now, importantly, this is dependent upon the maturity of the company as you are growing. If you’re in a startup situation, you are going to bring in people who are good in a startup situation. You’re going to bring on people who understand how to build a startup into something larger.
If you are in a medium-size organization, you may discover that if the people that are currently working in the company joined when the company was smaller, they may not be the right people for a medium-sized organization.
One of the key questions to ask yourself as a CEO when you’re hiring your leadership team is “based on my current growth. Who am I hiring for right now? Am I hiring for a person who can bring us to the next level of growth or am I hiring for a person who can help us in the current stage of growth?” Different skillsets for different stages of growth, different speeds of growth, different sizes of companies. It is a very, very important factor in scaling a company.
Create Processes that Will Help Grow the Company Beyond Its Current Level
The next consideration is processes. This is a word CEOs hate. I understand. I hated it when I was a CEO as well. Who wants to spend time putting in processes when we are trying to create a great company? Don’t processes get in the way? Well, they can, and sometimes they do, but ultimately you are trying to enable scale to happen inside your company. There has to be a way for people to understand what to do when they don’t report to you directly anymore. There has to be a way for standard operating procedures to exist in a way that people can step into a role and get the work done without having to go through a great deal of training.
Utilizing Best Practices
Another key factor about processes is that these are essentially best practices. If you are the CEO, if you and the company are developing best practices on how to interact with customers – On how to build products, on how to manage the culture, etc. These processes enable you to gain scale. It’s a way of enabling people to learn what are the best practices that have gotten the company to where it is today. One very important type of process falls under the area of values.
Utilizing Company Values
A very effective way to scale a company is through values and by values. I mean, the words we use to describe how we think about the world. So from a process standpoint, the role of the CEO is to ensure that the leadership team understands the values, speaks to the values, and teaches the values to everybody else in the company. So imagine you’re in a company that had three levels, and now it has five levels because it is growing. The question is, how does a new employee or someone coming in who’s an individual contributor implement things the way the CEO wants them to? One way is though values and the second is processes. They can implement best practices quickly by understanding how the company thinks, and what those best practices are without the CEO or even the leadership team having to be involved in every little detail. This enables scale.
Invest In Systems that Will Increase Efficiency
The last consideration is systems. As the company grows, people are going to need to share a lot more information. The company’s going to have a lot more data. It’s going to be collecting data and need to implement things using this data. There will be systems available to the company that it’s important to consider bringing in. There’s always a build or buy decision. Let’s just say, you’re going to buy Instead of build for the sake of argument. The question the CEO should pose is what are the systems we can purchase that will enable us to implement the processes we’ve put in place to be done more effectively, more efficiently. Let’s look for ways to automate some of the work that can be done, or that is being done now, to help people be more effective and more efficient. Let’s invest in the organization in addition to people and processes with systems to help us all scale even faster.
Contact CEO Coach Glenn Gow Today!
I love coaching CEOs and want to help make you an even better CEO. Let’s decide if we are a fit for each other. Schedule a time to talk with me at calendly.com/glenngow. I look forward to speaking with you soon.