An early stage entrepreneur leads, inspires, sets things up and makes things happen. He or she is the driving force behind the business, knows everything about the company, about its products, and about its customers. Sleeves rolled up, down in the detail, working hard to get the sales in and the products out. It’s tough – the entrepreneur is the business, and the business is the entrepreneur.
But then something happens. As the business grows it becomes more complex. There’s more to be done and the entrepreneur can’t do it all. A tipping point is reached when the business needs new structures, new people, new processes. It’s crucial to bring these in, because without them the entrepreneur will become focused on the day to day problems and the business will inevitably stagnate.
It’s not easy to recognise when this happens, and it’s not always obvious what these structures, people and processes need to be. But there are lots of models that entrepreneurs can turn to for guidance. These tipping points continue to occur at various stages in a company’s growth – if they can be anticipated and dealt with effectively, the entrepreneurial will remove one major barrier to business growth