Path To Success Blog Series: Part 1 – Law of the Lid.

First, we all know it can be stressful and business growth can seem unattainable given the time you already spent in your business – so you resign yourself to that fact. But remember, the original McDonald’s could not grow beyond two restaurants until someone else came along and saw another way forward.

In short, the Law of the Lid dictates that the growth potential of a business is capped at the limitations of its leader’s vision, knowledge, and support resources. In order to ‘lift the lid, you need to improve all of those areas (Hint: we can help with that).

Here’s more detailed explanation…

You start and want to scale your business. It’s a good idea, but how is it achieved?

Many blogs and sites speak of a ‘growth mindset,’ the aspiration attitude, predicated on critiquing existing elements within the business, rather than making meaningful improvements and overhauls to the plans, structures and strategies that have taken the business to the current level of growth.

This unscientific methodology, often involves minor improvements and the business owner being spread far too thin, trying to be the:

  • marketing manager
  • accounts manager
  • operations manager
  • human resources manager
  • purchasing officer, and
  • strategic leader

After a while, a small business owner will often accept the fallacy that scaling is simply too difficult – but it’s not scaling that’s the problem, it’s the methodology and systemisation.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

Business owners can scale their business if they have the courage to question the systems, processes and even attitudes that have got them to where they are today.

The best example of this is the story of McDonald’s restaurants and Ray Kroc. The story is attached, but the lesson is obvious – highly duplicable systems will always prevail, and business owners must become aware of not only their core strengths, but also their shortcomings and how to best overcome them.

The original founders of McDonald’s, Dick and Maurice McDonald, created something successful, but lacked the ability to transform a vision into a reality – and arguably they lacked the ability to create the vision at all. Ray Croc had vision, and took what already was a very good business, and turned it into a juggernaut. He did this through a powerful vision, combined with effective and highly duplicable systems, which have been the subject of business textbooks for many years.

It’s likely if you’re reading this that you are passionate about the service or function your business performs.

Whether you’re a plumber with a few employees, a small manufacturer or an online store owner, the business you created is likely to have come about as a result of your effective technical skill and passionate energy.

The problem is, to effectively scale, a business owner must make the transition from understanding the technical side of the business, to moving higher up the chain and evaluating how the business sits against the rest of the industry, and it’s key competitors.

The owner must make an evaluation of available resources, whether additional funding is required in order to realise goals, if the proper strategy is already in place, or if changes will need to be made to differentiate, enhance or improve. Ray Kroc didn’t care about burgers, quality of meat or the time it took to get a McDonald’s burger in front of a patron – but he did have a passion for effective business, understanding

Ray Kroc didn’t care about burgers, quality of meat or the time it took to get a McDonald’s burger in front of a patron – but he did have a passion for effective business, understanding high-level strategy and making sure the organisation was in the right place at the right time. He was the right guy for that particular job.

This crucial step is the foundation of the services we offer.

Our goal, is to transition organisations from offering a service or product, to being a sustainable ecosystem in its own right. We work not only on the business, but also on the business owner, increasing their commercial acumen and understanding of what needs to be done – not only in relation to their own business, but also the industry and economic climate as a whole.

Through defining a clear vision, and putting benchmarks in place, business owners can feel confident that they are on the right track, and not just treading water and waiting for changes in the industry, or innovations from their competitors to impact on their bottom line. In essence, they are empowered to be proactive rather than react to circumstances as they arise.

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