Shaumik Saha: The Importance of Scalability
This is an excerpt from our weekly newsletters authored by Shaumik Saha. Sign up below to subscribe.
I hope you've had a good week thus far.
I came across a very symbolic image earlier this week. It was an image of a pet fish that had outgrown it's bowl to the extent where it hardly had any water left for it to thrive on. The slightest movement could topple the bowl over and that would be the end of that fish.
That got me thinking. While the fundamental purpose of that pet fish- or any living creature for that matter- is to constantly grow on various different fronts; that very growth can turn into it's worst enemy under certain circumstances.
Growth without salable room for growth can be counterproductive. Dangerous. Fatal.
The same stands true for your business. Without scalable business processes growth becomes your worst enemy.
This is one of the biggest business growth mistakes you can make as a founder, business owner or manager.
Ever heard startup founders or managers say "we're growing to fast"? Well this is usually why that is. They are growing too fast to sustain operations.
This is why scalability is critical. So what does scalability mean? Well it could mean several different things. Here are a few key pointers: (1) Ensuring that you have the bandwidth to cover increasing demand at the same or reduced cost (always try and ensure that economies of scale are true for you. Don't make the fatal mistake of growing at a greater cost- that is a bubble of delusion waiting to pop).
(2) Well defined, simplified processes that can be delegated with minimal management and still deliver highly productive outputs.
(3) I have always been an advocate of all businesses thinking like franchisors- having well defined internal processes that can be easily scaled up or down as required.
(4) Thorough resource management to ensure that you are always adequately prepared to function at various different scales.
(5) Asses scalability and bandwidth before you make any major outreach efforts (a major advertising campaign, partnership, etc.)
As always, I hope this has been helpful to you. Wishing you a pleasant rest of the day and week ahead