You’ve made the leap, and now you’re the proud owner of a small business. Your company has been built from the ground up, and you’ve been there every step of the way. It’s easy to want to sit back and relax, to bask in the success of your venture. While marvelling at what you have created is an important part of your small business journey, it’s important to remember that the road does not end there. Promoting growth is essential to ensuring your business remains profitable. Here are five tips to push your startup into a flourishing business.

Craft effective business processes

You may have begun your small business as a one-person show, which allowed you to operate as you pleased. However, as you expand and bring employees on board, it’s essential that you develop clear plans and guidelines for how your business will operate. Those contributing to your business, both internally and externally, need to be aware of what their contribution is and how to deliver it best.

Effective communication and leadership skills are extremely important. If your business processes are well laid out, both operation and expansion will run smoothly.

Diversify your opportunities

Typically, customers don’t buy from you because they don’t want what you’re offering (or how you’re offering it). If your goal is to appeal to a new section of the market, it makes sense to expand the goods or services you are offering. If your bookstore is struggling to meet its targets, consider serving coffee and snacks.

Diversifying can generate multiple streams of income, which often can mitigate seasonal lows. An ice-cream shop that offers warm desserts in winter will find that they experience less of a cold slump. You’ll automatically attract new customers, who may then discover the delights of your original products.

Don’t cut corners

Building up a business is always expensive. Inevitably, something has to give. There are numerous ways to bring down your overhead costs, but don’t be tempted to shave off quality. Your customer base continues to buy your products or services because they believe they are getting the best value for money. Any tweaks to what is on offer will be noticed immediately. Customers hate change, and those who cut corners often find their business walks right out the door.

Build a loyal and efficient employee base

If you began this business with all the control, it can be difficult to put your faith in someone else. After all, no one knows your business like you do.

Your employees are the ones that support your customers when you can’t be there. They are the backbone of your company, and treating them well will pay off in spades. Well-trained, pleasant staff will grow your consumer base and even attract customers from the competition. The cost of retraining staff is high, both in time and money, and having employees that can work independently will save you a lot of anxiety when you have to be away from your business.

Believe in yourself—but don’t be afraid to seek help

Your skills, enterprising nature and blind faith have gotten you this far, so trust yourself to make the next step. Now that your business is up and running, you will face many difficult decisions, however, you have the resources to get yourself through every one of them. In saying this, it’s also important to recognise where your weaknesses lie and to not be afraid to seek advice from those more experienced than yourself. Financial advisors, industry groups or even your best friend have different skills to offer. Asking for help is often the difference between a business succeeding or failing.

Learn more about growing your business and develop an understanding of certain economic issues that come into play with an online postgraduate degree in commerce from RMIT University.  Speak to an admissions manager today on 1300 701 171.