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6 Mistakes People Make When Trying To Grow a Business

Just like starting a new business, growing or scaling up a business has its fair share of challenges. There are mistakes, for instance, that may slow you down and hurt your growth strategy. Such mistakes can make the difference between resources lost with painful failures and being successful with your growth strategy.

To ensure that you don’t repeat the mistakes, we’ve highlighted some of the most common blunders that people make when trying to grow businesses.

1. Scaling Without A Solid Foundation

Many businesses are tempted to implement advanced strategies like affiliate marketing and setting up sales funnels before even making the first sale. This is a mistake. You need to prove your concept before you think of expanding. In other words, you should make at least one sale or more before you can think of implementing advanced marketing strategies like using a sales funnel. Think of bringing one client or more to the service that you are offering. Once you have achieved that, repeat. If you see good results, you can progress with advanced techniques or your growth strategy.

2. Not Building Your Brand Early Enough

As you try to grow your business, it is easy to overlook opportunities to develop and amplify your brand. However, you should remember that your brand is your business identity. It is what makes your company valuable and memorable. Accordingly, while it may seem intangible, branding is what makes your business unique. From a wide perspective, your brand not only serves as an extension of your expansion efforts but also defines what your business stands for while proving the foundation for future opportunities.

3. Copying Other Businesses

Some business owners think that the best way to grow fast is to copy what others have done in the past or are currently doing. While some successful people tend to share what they have done to grow their business and label them as ‘secrets’, you should understand that they are not really secrets. Success is unique to every business and means different things to different people. So, there is no way you can copy 100% of the steps of a successful business and make them your own. And even if it was possible, what is the point of having a couple of similar businesses?

It’s okay to copy a segment of another business or an idea that seems to be working for other businesses and build upon it. However, there is more to just copy-pasting all the ideas of another business. Put simply, there are so many factors that impact the end results of any business, not just what their owners say on the surface.

4. Not Finding A Business Coach

Business coaching is not a new secret to small business owners. Having a professional on your side who has been through what you are going through (or whatever you want to go through) can give you a better perspective of what to expect as well as open you up to opportunities that you might have not figured out otherwise.

92% of small business owners report having recorded tremendous business growth after partnering with business coaches. In a space where there is a thin line between success and failure, such a kind of impact is critical.

There are many places where you can find a business mentor, including local small business development centers, Maui business growth strategies platform, SCORE, Veteran business outreach centers, and women business centers among others.

5. Not planning

When you were starting your business, one of the initial steps that you probably took was to compile a business plan to guide the early stages of your business as well as provide investors and other stakeholders with a map on how you will meet your goals. When it comes to growing your business, you need to update your business plan to cater to new objectives, new metrics, and new changes. For instance, you should update your financial goals so that you can budget for the new and evolving expenses, new hires, and new marketing campaigns.

6. Over-hiring early on

While hiring people to help with things like keeping your accounting books in order, running marketing campaigns, and figuring out logistics can be a welcome relief to a small business owner, doing it too early can derail your growth strategy. You should only think of making new hires when you have enough funding.

Hiring too many employees too fast is always a recipe for a disaster—in several ways. You should always remember that hiring a new employee is more expensive than their salary.  You will have to train them, get more office space to accommodate them, and invest in new equipment, supplies, and software. You may also hire the wrong people, putting your business at risk.

Key Takeaway

Like other aspects of business, avoiding mishaps when you are trying to grow your business is, of course, easier said than done. So, strive to keep an eye out for the above-highlighted pitfalls that may arise when you are trying to expand or grow your business and you will be better placed to handle them.

However, remember that we all make mistakes. So, the most important thing is to be aware of them and consistently work towards making better and more informed decisions. If you can manage to avoid some of the mentioned pitfalls and remain resilient when faced with new challenges, you will definitely win.


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