When there are 6 million private sector small and medium sized businesses within the UK, why is it that just 4% of them scale beyond 10 employees/around £1m turnover? And, equally importantly, what is preventing 75% of these from then scaling beyond 50?
Drawing on BizSmart’s own research and experiences of working with hundreds of owner-managers, Kevin Brent explores the key reasons why most organisations do not scale and how the challenges change as they reach different milestones on the ScaleUp Journey. He then details a practical step by step guide to successfully navigate between the milestones in the form of ESUS - a proven system for entrepreneurs to scale up
By reading this book and following BizSmart’s system, you will:
Truly understand what it takes to become one of the 4% and build a more valuable business
Become a more effective and confident leader
Rediscover your passion in your business and be inspired to aim higher
Understand how to harness the power of your people and gain more control over your business
Increase the productivity and profitability of your business and make sure that you get ‘paid first’!
BizSmart’s programmes are based on decades of experience and the system on which this book is based has recently joined a select group of programmes endorsed by the ScaleUp Institute in the UK.
Mark Wright, BBC’s The Apprentice winner, CEO of Climb Online, Forbes 30 Under 30, 2017
"Unlock any issue that is preventing you from scaling up"
In Kevin’s book you will find the answers to unlock any issue that is preventing you from scaling, together with extremely valuable advice that will put you on the right track to achieving your plan and goals.
"Great guide for any business owner serious about scaling up."
Invaluable checklist of tasks, processes and above all a change in mindset
"For any entrepreneur looking to understand the true challenges in business and how they can overcome them to scale growth, this is the book for you."
"An amazing and exceptionally insightful read for anybody looking to grow or manage a truly successful business. This book should be a must on any MBA reading list – period."
"A feast of information. If you want a business that not only stands the test of time but continues to improve this is a must-read."
This book is not about short-term fixes and glib tricks and promises.
If you have been in business for more than 5 minutes, you will recognise that there are always challenges (problems, if you prefer!) in business. They normally fall into challenges around people, cash and time, and most business books and advisers will home in on these. We can spend increasing amounts of time troubleshooting these challenges but we never seem to get them to go away – and in fact as we grow we can get to the point where we cannot imagine being able to cope with our business being any bigger. We can get increasingly stressed, being pulled in many directions, to the point that it takes us away from our families and no longer seems fun to be a ‘business owner’.
This is because these problems are ‘symptoms’ and troubleshooting symptoms will only provide a temporary fix at best, just like taking paracetamol for a migraine may provide some relief against joint pain but won’t cure the underlying cause and therefore won’t help to reduce the frequency of reoccurrences. In fact, as we grow our business, the frequency and severity of ‘migraines’ will only increase.
This book is not about short-term fixes and glib tricks and promises – it is about putting a system in place that will enable you to strengthen the underlying business (and you!) so that fewer symptoms emerge, and when they do (because they inevitably will), you will have a structure for the business (note: the business, not you) to deal with them.
Equally this is not some theoretical textbook, but rather a pragmatic step-by-step guide for any ambitious owner-manager looking to develop the kind of business that gives them the freedom and control they crave – rather than being controlled by their business.
The intent of this book is to become your ‘companion’ as you navigate through your ScaleUp Journey – a kind of ‘handbook’. We’d love it if you write notes in the margin, highlight sections and turn down the corners of pages you find particularly useful – and refer back to it regularly as your business evolves.
So this is the system we have developed over many years working with hundreds of business owners. We call it the Entrepreneurial ScaleUp System – or ESUS for short! – and Part 2 of the book follows this structure.
Starting at the centre is something we call the Rhythm90, the main heartbeat of the business. The next ring are the 4 fundamental and widely referred to Pillars of Scaling Up that we need to get right as we navigate the different stepping stones of the ScaleUp Journey – Strategy, People, Execution and Cash[i]. The outer ring are the core things within each of these pillars that we need to get right in each in order to be able to scale successfully and overcome the challenges along the way.
We explore each of these and provide a ‘checklist’ of things to consider and to work on over time – this is something that you can come back to every 90 days as part of your Business Rhythm to identify the next focus. We call this our ‘InFlight Checks’® – in flight because we have already taken off (this is not our pre-launch or pre-‘take off’ checks) and these are the regular checks that we need to do now that we are in flight as we navigate our ScaleUp Journey