Every business experiences "growing pains" as it moves from infancy to adolescence and finally, maturity. Whether or not your business grows out of its awkward stage depends — on lots of things — starting with the pain itself.
Some of the growing pains that business owners commonly share with me include:
- Limited cash flow
- Insufficient financial reserves
- Conflicting priorities
- Leads not converting
- Challenging and/or difficult employees
- Loneliness and isolation
- Self doubt
- Lack of control of your days, let alone your future
- Easily getting caught up in minutia
- Unrelenting overwhelm
Can you relate? I bet you can. And, in a weird sort of way, isn't it nice to know you're not alone? Growing pains are common among small business entrepreneurs. And, like many business owners, you can likely add a few more to the ever-growing list of challenges that come with growing a business.
Underlying Causes of Business Problems
No matter the industry in which your business exists, the challenges are eerily similar. Many of the growing pains that you experience occur as a fallout of any — or all — of these elements:
- Unfamiliar that growing pains are a common business occurrence
- Unaware of practical solutions
- Uncomfortable in speaking openly about your growing pains
- Desire to sweep them under the rug, ignore them, and hope they will disappear
More specifically, growing pains intensify in force when co-existing with any of these factors:
- Ad hoc planning.
- Missing implementation of loosely crafted goals and plans
- Absent growth strategy
- Scant revenues
- Unproven business model
- Poor operational development
- Roles and responsibilities not clearly defined
- Missed opportunities
- Ill-defined marketing and sales funnels
- Loss of objectivity
- Excessive optimism when setting expectations and goals
Would you ever place a band-aid on a gaping wound? Or treat a brain tumor with aspirin? Of course not! Yet, we commonly "treat" the symptoms of our growing pains hoping for a durable resolution. Although it may relieve immediate pressure, it certainly isn't sustainable. Under stress, the band-aid pops off and we're back to square one. It's just not worth it!
While attempting to grow your business in a silo, we often don't know what we don't know. We're too close to our own situation to see — with any clarity and distinction — the causes of our pain. This is why we're increasingly advocating for business owners to participate in a mastermind group.
The Solution? Mastermind Groups
Most of us are familiar with mastermind groups. They bring advice, learning, and support to its members, focusing on what’s most important. In fact, they are more vital to today’s business success than ever before.
Facilitated by an experienced small business strategist and coach, discussions tap into the collective knowledge of the group to help you stay ahead of the rapid-fire changes happening in your business. Additionally, bouncing ideas off each other offers solutions that actually work! It's a perfect sounding board for accelerating your success.
Mastermind groups provide an opportunity to speak candidly in a trusting environment. With complete transparency, there's no concealing, skirting the issue, or getting around the source of your growing pains.
With expertise from those who have experienced identical growing pains, you can rest assured that countermeasures recommended by your colleagues are guaranteed to bring you relief — and the maintainable result — you're after much more quickly than if you try to suffer through it yourself.
The sooner you're able to implement viable solutions to your "growing pains," the more quickly you'll experience a less-stressful phase of business growth and development...
Ultimately, the trajectory of your business depends on it.
If you're tired of being a lone-ranger and are considering a mastermind group for your business, consider joining us at Eureka! Designed exclusively for the small business owner with less than $1M in revenue and/or fewer than 10 employees, conversations are relevant and timely.