If you have a startup, then you know that there’s no shortage of things to do. You’re probably busy with marketing and sales, customer support, and project management.
And don’t even get me started on all the administrative work that comes with running a business! The good news is that there are some basic principles for scaling your startup—and if you follow them, they’ll help you save time, energy, and money while scaling faster than ever before.
In this blog we’ll look at how these principles can be applied to your particular situation:
REDUCE CYCLE TIME
Cycle time is the average amount of time it takes to complete a project. Because it’s an average, you can assume that it includes some unusually long times and some unusually short ones, so don’t get too hung up on exact numbers here. It’s more important to understand the overall trend and whether or not your company has been making progress in reducing cycle time over time.
Why Is Cycle Time Important?
Cycle time matters because every minute you spend on one project is another minute you can’t spend on another project. Your goal should be for every single person involved in each stage of your operations (from ideation through deployment) to get better at their job with each iteration until they can do it faster than ever before while maintaining quality standards – this will allow you to reduce cycle times across all areas of product development.
How Can You Reduce Cycle Time?
There are four main levers for reducing cycle time:
- increasing efficiency
- increasing throughput
- improving communication
- improving quality
GET YOUR PRODUCT RIGHT
Once you’ve got your product ready to go, the next step is to make sure it’s the best it can be. This means making sure that you know your customer and understand the problem you’re solving for them.
You must also test with customers early and often. And if what they’re saying isn’t positive, be willing to pivot quickly—don’t keep going with a feature or product if it doesn’t resonate with people in any way.
- Focus on revenue and profits, not just growth.
- Don’t worry about the things that don’t generate revenue or profits.
- Focus on what your customers want, not what you think they want.
Finally, make sure that your product is easy to use and affordable enough so that someone will want to buy it over other available options.
FIND YOUR EARLY ADOPTERS
The most important thing right now is to find your early adopters. This is the group of people that will be willing to try out your product and provide feedback on it. They will also be willing to help you figure out what type of marketing makes sense for your product, which channels are best for reaching them, and so forth.
These early adopters must influence other people in their industry or community, so they can refer themselves to others who might benefit from using your product as well. That way, they won’t just be one user among many—they’ll become an influencer who helps spread the word about your startup around their network.
How to find early adopters?
Well first by talking with them directly (assuming you’re already connected), but also by looking at where else online conversations are happening about similar topics.
If there’s already a lot of discussion going on about something related then it’s likely some of those people may be interested in trying out what you’re building if you reach out personally.
Additionally, if there isn’t much conversation happening yet but there should be considering how helpful something could be then this would indicate a niche opportunity that could take off once it gains momentum!
To find the right tasks to prioritize, first take a look at your business model. If you’re still in the early stages of building your company, it’s important to focus on how you’re going to bring in revenue. If that means creating a new product, then this is something that should be at the top of your list.
If you already have existing customers and are looking for ways to grow their loyalty and repeat business, focus on improving customer service (and making sure they know about it).
No matter where you are in terms of growth or maturity as an entrepreneur, there will always be more than one thing on your plate. It’s up to you as an entrepreneur and leader to decide what matters most for your startup’s success so that when crunch time comes around again—and believe me, it will—you have no trouble deciding which tasks should get done first.
EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION (WITH TEAM AND CUSTOMERS)
To ensure that your business is running smoothly and effectively, you must communicate with your team and customers.
Efficiently communicate with your team
Your employees are the backbone of your company—they’re who keep it going on a day-to-day basis by doing what they do best: whatever it takes to get things done! To make sure they’re working together as efficiently as possible, they need to be on the same page when it comes to tasks, schedules, and overall goals for the group. Take advantage of tools like Slack or Workplace by Facebook for real-time communication between teammates about everything from projects at hand to lunch plans that day.
Get feedback from customers
Collect customer feedback about what’s working for them in regard to their relationship with you as well as what could use some work (and why). You can do this through surveys sent via email or review sites (such as Yelp) where customers leave testimonials about their experiences with your business.
But if possible try asking directly in person by conducting one-on-one interviews with people who’ve been using your product/service recently so they feel comfortable enough to open up without fear of judgment or consequence – even if they don’t always give specific answers right away!
It may take several sessions before someone feels like talking openly about how something could change, but once everyone gets used to being open around each other this could allow more creativity regarding new ideas which might otherwise never surface.
STREAMLINE YOUR PROCESSES, FOCUS ON THE MOST IMPORTANT TASKS
It’s a no-brainer: automation is the way to go for your startup.
If you’re a startup founder, you know that your time is valuable. It’s hard enough to get your business off the ground, but when you’re also trying to manage all of its day-to-day operations, it can feel impossible.
Startups are all about speed, agility, and innovation—but they also need to be lean, flexible, and efficient. The last thing you want to do is get bogged down in the day-to-day tasks of running your business.
When looking at startup scaling, try to streamline your processes, reduce waste and focus on your most important tasks. You should automate/ outsource mundane tasks and focus on the things that matter. You should also prioritize, find your early adopters and communicate effectively with them.
As a startup founder, your job is to adapt. You need to constantly make changes, whether they are big or small, to stay on top of the competition and grow your business.
But what if you could automate some of those processes that take up so much of your time? What if you could save yourself hours each week by outsourcing some of those mundane tasks?
Imagine being able to spend more time thinking about the future of your company—and less time worrying about how many receipts are in your inbox.
We hope this article helped you to understand some of the most effective ways to do so, and that it will help you on your journey. If you are looking for guided help or mentorship to scale your startup, TiE SoCal Angels can help you. Pitch your business idea in front of the investors and startup scaling experts directly through TiE SoCal Angels.