The challenge at this Stage lies in addressing the enormous shift in complexity in the organization as the number of employees can double from just the prior Stage. By looking at the business from the perspective of an ideal business model, providing an integrated yet holistic template of how the enterprise could perform, you can apply solutions from a more informed viewpoint. Not an easy transformation for a CEO, but a critical one to think about as a Stage 7 company.
Stage 6 is called the Strategic Stage because the risk of not seeing the larger strategic picture could cause the ‘too little, too late’ syndrome. In Stages 1 - 4, the leader acts nearly exclusively with an immediate focus, dealing with only the current issues and opportunities. The leader doesn’t really have to tackle serious budgets and long-term planning until Stage 5. Now that the company has reached Stage 6, the planning horizon must go beyond a year in order to compete in the marketplace.
In a Stage 4 company, comprised of 35 – 57 employees, the changes that occur are exponentially more impactful than anything the company has experienced to date. So, when we look at Stage 4, addressing the change becomes the top priority and the focus must be on getting processes and infrastructure in place to manage this Stage of Growth.
Starting a business has never been easy; the beginning stages of a new venture can feel like a whirlwind of chaos and uncertainty. Understanding the stages of business growth, and how companies progress through these stages, is essential for any entrepreneur hoping to thrive in the chaotic beginnings of starting a company.