“We are struggling to grow the business and take it to the next level”
Building a successful business is no mean feat. Along the way there are always hurdles to overcome.
Sometimes the barriers to success are obvious – more sales are needed or bigger premises are required. However, frequently the barriers to growth are not so apparent or are even invisible to everyone concerned, caught up in their daily busy-ness and routines.
How do you know with certainty what is preventing you from obtaining the success you desire? Typical plausible reasons include:
- The business seems to be stuck at our current level of turnover and profit and no matter what we do it does not change
- There is a fear, perhaps justifiable, about how the business can be scaled without changing the company culture we all know and love
- Our staff are disillusioned and frustrated, we work hard and yet we still suffer low staff morale
- We are concerned we may be exposing the business to unknown risks by expanding too fast
- We fear we will lose engagement with our customers.
None of these are problems—they are symptoms of a deeper problem or problems which fall in to two categories:
- functional problems, and
- personal and interpersonal problems.
Functional problems arise from a failure to recognise and address the changing needs of the business as it grows, or even as it needs to change to meet external influences. Frequently changes are not made early enough which results in other problems before earlier planned changes can be made, and become exponentially compounding and complex to perhaps even the point of overwhelm.
Personal and interpersonal problems can show up in many ways: stress, motivation (lack of), apathy, (more or less overt) conflict, and even guilt and shame.
Once again, these are symptoms of even deeper issues.
Everyone, unknowingly, held back by … what?
Often it is necessary to recognise that the business is not moving forward because it is being held back. No amount of ‘doing things’ to get the business to move forward will be successful until the right reasons for why it is being held back are understood and dealt with.
The fact that no one person is aware of how the business is held back doesn’t mean it isn’t happening – it is the big unknown, but paradoxically, the reasons are all around you, yet to be revealed.
You can see it … but it takes ‘time out’ for it to become tangible
Your busy-ness blocks you from seeing what others are able to see. External consultants, advisors and interim executives can see what you can’t, but not to the detail that matters. Only you and your staff know that.
The Hidden Value Inquiry listening approach we champion gives everyone the chance to say what they need to reveal about their businesses and workplaces.
All it takes is sufficient time and space, in complete confidence, to say what each needs to say without the influences of ‘group think’, or ‘what the boss might think’ (which doesn’t so much matter when we take the boss through our approach too!).
Often people don’t realise what they actually know until they achieve a relaxed and safe state of mind. We are continually amazed at what ‘revelations’ are spoken about from directors to shop floor staff when anxiety drops away and spontaneity rises.
From this, profound things become visible and can, with the right approach, take flight.
Real and sustainable change is then possible.