Like plants, we all want to grow, and even more so if we’re trying to scale up a business. You’re also probably looking for the “magic solution” to solving your scaling issues.
Guess what? We are too.
It turns out that there are many factors when it comes to scaling your design business. You can’t sidestep or pick and choose, you’ll need to actually work through all of them in order to truly grow and avoid expanding too fast.
Luckily, we’ve done the hard work and can give you some core tips for scaling up your agency that will be immensely helpful.
1. Scaling Your Design Business: Getting More Clientele
Obviously, mo’ customers equals mo’ money but there’s more to it than just completing more cold calls, creating targeted ads, and so on.
To scale up, you need to consider your current sales flow first. Do you have the processes in place to easily contact, get the status of, and move clients through to the sales funnel?
If not, then you could end up missing out on valuable clients that got lost from the lack of systems that didn’t scale with you. This is especially true if you have a small sales team and can only handle “x” number of sales at a time. You need to refine your systems and make sure that all relevant emails, calls, or whatever medium you’re using are all followed up with accordingly.
If your systems aren’t in play, your sales will go away.
2. How to Optimize Your Workload
You’ll find that most of our tips rely on internal operations going smoothly. That’s not without reason. We’ve witnessed what happens when communication breaks down through poor processes and things don’t get done.
It’s a mess.
We’ve grown from these messes and have learned to appreciate the importance of knowing who needs to get assigned with certain tasks, and what should just be done yourself. Sometimes getting work done actually means letting go and delegating it to someone else who has a greater capacity to accomplish it.
Speaking of tasks, when it comes to scaling up a design business you need to know what things aren’t getting done and how to properly schedule low-priority tasks.
Find out if you need some fine-tuning with the design business workbook we were featured in. It will not only give you a clearer idea of how we operate, but also give you even more tools to manage tasks.
3. How to Reduce Costs
Finally, to scale, you need to know how to reduce costs. Before you get your employee termination t-shirt on though, there are plenty of ways to reduce costs that don’t involve firing your employees.
A simple way to reduce costs may be as simple as a better workflow and handoff process. This could be implemented (and end up saving you a great deal in the long term) by actually buying some kind of task management software that better helps employees to track progress on projects.
Automation isn’t just an assembly line of robots anymore. Many software tools offer ways to automate emails, messages, and reports to save you time, money and make end of the month invoices the best part of your day.
Be cautious though, the more systems you have, the more they’ll need to be managed. Set up only what is essential at first, then find ways to expand. All while ensuring each system connects smoothly to the ones that already exist.
As you can see, scaling up your design business effectively is more than just hiring more staff. Systems need to be improved, processes need to be refined, and sales flows need to be optimized to ensure your company grows in the best way possible.