Hispanic small businesses can mitigate the complexities of managing growth with these 6 tips
Managing growth for my Hispanic business was tough and required a whole new skill set including managing scaled up finances, technical responsibilities and hugely increased human resource duties. Be prepared. On Tuesday, I shared some anecdotes and my thoughts on how to best manage growth. Today I am imparting six lessons I learned along the way to apply to your Hispanic business.
1. Update your business plan on a regular basis.
I said this before, but Im saying it again because as you grow, everything changes and you have to plan again as if you were just starting out. Think your progress along instead of simply being reactive.
2. Increasing the scale requires adjustments
As you increase the scale of your company, the marketing function becomes even more important because you need a higher level of business activity to pay all of these employees, landlords, lease holders and taxes. And if you take on new overhead to handle the new business, try to keep it flexible or get a guarantee from the new clients regarding the flow of income, otherwise you could find yourself stretched to service a client who for whatever reason suddenly has a change of plans, leaving you in the lurch with overhead to cover.
3. Dont expect to take a whole lot of your profits home.
You'll need them for a cushion for slow periods, for newer versions of software, for employee training, for marketing and business development travel.
4. When you are an entrepreneur, you will never need a vacation more than you will as your company is growing.
It will never be harder to get away. Everyone looks to you. If youre doing this as a couple, it may be even harder. And finding a trusted lieutenant you can leave in charge is tough. So if you do get away youll have to keep your trips short and check in frequently. Happily this is aided these days with smart phones and the internet, but that can mean you dont really get away at all. I would recommend physically active vacations because while you are skiing or snorkeling or hiking in the mountains it is hard to think about anything other than what you are doing at that moment, and when you stop, you are so tired from your physical activity, you just relax.
5. You can't be paranoid about your employees, but you cant expect them to be angels either.
Manage through coaching, check in with them regularly, be as laudatory as you can when deserved, and when innocent mistakes are made use them as a teachable moment and DO NOT YELL. When you stumble upon really good people who provide professional services to your company, stick with them, even when they switch companies. Your service will be better and you will earn their loyalty.
6. As a Hispanic business owner, you have to be careful to follow the employment verification laws even if you disapprove of them. If you want comprehensive immigration reform, work for it.
About the author
Carlos E. Garcia, born to Mexican immigrant parents, grew up in East Los Angeles and attended Pomona College, UC Berkeley and National University (BA, MA and MBA respectively). He has over thirty years of experience in the field of US Hispanic consumer research, twenty one years at the helm of his own company, Garcia Research. Most recently SVP at GfK: Knowledge Networks, where he headed up their Hispanic research efforts. He's gone full circle and now back at the helm of Garcia Research, a Hispanic market and Multicultural-focused research firm.Website