Is your business ready to scale?

16 February 2022

Is your business ready to scale?

Many business owners focus merely on growth, but it’s often better to think about how you can ‘scale a business’. Scaling a business is about setting the stage to enable and support your future business growth. If you want your company to grow and succeed long term and become more profitable, you’re going to need a plan on how to ‘scale’ your business, not merely consider how to ‘grow’ your business.


How does scaling a business differ from growing a business?

Scaling a business differs from merely growing a business in that scaling focuses generating more revenue without increasing costs proportionally. Scaling is about planning how to increase the size and scope of operations and becomes more profitable as it grows.

Focusing on scaling your business, rather than just growth, can help you to find capacity in your existing infrastructure and optimise your current resources more effectively.  Business owner should look at scaling and not just focus on purely business growth.


How do I know if my business is scalable?

The first question that business owners need to ask is ‘Is my business scalable?’ For a business to successfully scale it needs to maintain performance whilst it grows and market demand or production rate increases.


Characteristics of a scalable business

A shared vision

As a business owner having a clear vision and being able to articulate is key to scalability. You need to share your vision with your team and get them to share that vision and help you work towards achieving it.


The right management team

You need a team to help you to achieve your vision. You don’t have a scalable business if that business relies too heavily on you as the owner. It’s important that your management team is diverse and brings to the table different skills. As a business owner, you should build a team that are different to you and better than you!


Documented processes

Documented processes are not only good for building and scaling a business but for selling it in the future as well. Build your business so that if you are not around to run it, someone else could come in and look at your business processes and run that business.


The right systems

Once you have clear processes, a scalable business ensures that it has the right systems in place to aid business processes. This will include things like a financial management system / online accounting, CRM, HR system etc.


Healthy cashflow

Creating healthy cashflow is critical to scaling a business. Using a variety of techniques such as creating recurring revenue, good invoicing and easy payment processes and supplier payment planning are all good ways to keep cashflow healthy.



If funding is needed to scale your business, then you need to understand where that funding will be coming from. What are your short and long term funding requirements? Whether you want to take on new people, buy a new property or develop a new product, one of the main elements in scaling is knowing the kind of funding you need to support that growth.



Often the most scalable businesses are those that put innovation at the forefront of their business strategy. Whether it’s product or service innovation or digitisation, thinking innovatively in everything you do in your business will help your business to scale.


Sales & marketing

Increasing revenue is still the target and you can’t do this without a good sales and marketing strategy. You need to find the best way to market your product or service to create sales opportunities and a clear process in place to convert those opportunities.


The right external advisors

Building a scalable business often means surrounding yourself as a business owner, not only with the right internal management team, but also the right advisors. Whether it’s your accountants or business coaches or mentors, the most successful business owners understand that having people external to the business as advisors will help them achieve their goals.


Working ‘on’ your business, not in it

Most business owners we know that struggle to scale have one thing in common…. A business owner that spends too much time working ‘in their business’ rather than ‘on their business’. Yes, the day-to-day work is important, the details are important (as it’s often the small day to day details being right that lead to longer term change and success). But if you remove yourself from these things in your business and focus more on the key things that move your business forward longer term and more strategically, then you’ll be one step closer to achieving scalability.

Make time and give focus to the core activities that scale and build your business longer term. Build the right team and delegate the other smaller stuff over time.


Building key relationships and networks

Key relationships can be critical to your scaling your business. Whether it’s key customers, key suppliers or people that will consistently refer work to you. Often ‘who you know’ that will help you to build the business to scale.


A businesses ability to scale depends on many factors, but fundamentally you need to build a business that can multiply revenue with minimal incremental cost. Being able to scale means increasing turnover without increasing costs by the same proportion.

Having a clear plan on how to scale your business and a proven business model will help you to reach your goals.

Scaling a business is not just for the realms of large-scale entrepreneurs. Knowing how to move and scale from a ‘big small business’ to a ‘small big business’ can be critical.


If you would like any help and advice, please do contact us at our offices in Liverpool,  Chester or Wirral.



Frank Murphy