Growth And Transition In Your Service Business

Written by Tammy Durden

If you own a business you know that to grow you often must transition your mindset or business. Growth and Transition go hand in hand in your online service business.

Why do growth and transition seem to go together? As you grow in business you, yourself, grow and transition. First, I’m discussing all you have learned along the way. Perhaps you have even taken a few courses to learn additional skills. You have also learned how to start and manage a business. You have changed or transitioned into thinking differently.

Example: Let’s say, for example, that you were good with money before starting your business. In running your business, however, you have learned how to budget, what’s important and what’s not important to purchase for your business, as well as, how much to charge for your services. You have grown tremendously in managing finances. And it is a transition in your mindset. You can use it in all parts of your life if you apply it.

This is only one example of how our mindset shifts in business. There are also many ways we must transition our business over our entrepreneurial journey.

A Transition can also take place when your online service business is ready to accommodate new types of clients, offer new services, or if you want to change to another industry type. All of these can be difficult transitions that require careful consideration and planning.

I have had many growth transitions over the years. I will share my progressions in business through the years (talk about transparency!).

  1. I Transitioned from a solopreneur to a VA Agency (virtual assistant) with a team.
  2. Approximately 3 – 5 years later I transitioned the business from a VA Agency into a Boutique Digital Marketing Agency.
  3. I was asked to be a mentor and teach on a large freelancing e-learning platform, which I accepted and added to the services I already offered and managed.
  4. Shortly afterward I began getting requests to coach. So, I started offering these services as well.
  5. At the end of 2020, I exited the digital marketing agency (making sure my team and clients were cared for) to offer coaching services full-time.
  6. This year (2024) I am no longer mentoring and teaching on the freelancing platform.
  7. I am starting to offer workshops and courses (along with my coaching services).

This has been my entrepreneurial journey. It has happened over 16 years. Do you know that equates to transitions happening nearly every 2 years? Wow!

Of course, that is not how it played out. My first transition happened within the first two years but then it took three to five more years before I transitioned us into a digital marketing agency. Each subsequent transition happened at varying time lengths.

Now, let’s look at the steps to help you transition your business. The growth and transitioning phase of business does not happen overnight. Just as success is not overnight neither is transitioning. There are steps you take to get to your growth and transition periods.

  1. Mindset
  2. Analysis
  3. Decisions
  4. Take Action
  5. Re-evaluate
  6. Live With It And Love It

Check your mindset when you’re considering growth and transition. Ask yourself a few questions first.

1.Why do you want to grow and transition? This is important as the why factor will drive you moving forward. Do you want to do this because others are doing it, or perhaps because you’ve been in business awhile and just think you are suppose to do it? Of course, neither of these are good reasons to move forward. The business is what should push you forward. Is the business growing and doing well? Are clients requesting other or new services? Has your team learned new skills? These and other reasons will help you discern if the business is ready, now let’s see if you are ready.

2. Are you in a good place mentally? Next you must consider you if you are ready and in a good place mentally. Growing and transitioning a business can be a trying time period. It will grow and stretch you not only the business. If you are not sure about your mentality I suggest consulting a business coach (if only concerned with the business side) or a professional counselor.

3. If not, why not? If you are not feeling in a good place at the moment can you discern why or what may have brought you here mentally? I suggest if you are not in a good place mentally, PLEASE Consult a Professional Counselor to help you. Reach out to a professional who help get back to a state of mental health and well being before you attempt to grow and transition the business.

4. If so, then do you have the bandwidth to put the effort into it? If you are confident that you are in a good place mentally then you must consider your bandwidth. In this case, bandwidth refers to your time management and ability to add more tasks to your alread full planner.

5. Is this the right time to transition and grow the business? This is also a must before moving forward. You should not only consider if it is a good time for the business and yourself, but look at the industry as well as the economy in your country and worldwide. Is the outlook good and what forecasters predicting in the online service business space?

6. How will you achieve these goals of growing and transitioning? Once you have determined the answers to all of these questions and you are ready and equipped to move forward then it’s time to set those goals. The goals related to growing and transitioning. How will achieve growth? Will it involve marketing, networking, sales, and more? What type of transition will take place in your company? Will you transition, like I did, from a VA Agency to a digital marketing agency? Or will you transition into a consulting company? There are so many options.

Write out your goals for growing and transitioning the business. Next take those goals and list each one at the top of a paper/digital notebook and underneath begin to write out steps and tasks that need to happen to grow and transition your company. [See also Step Three: Decisions]

One of the steps I had to take was to put together a pricing strategy for our new digital marketing agency. I had to do research and decide what I would include in each service package (and how many packages I would offer – it ended up being 3 by the way for each service type). Then I had to figure out how much I would charge. This meant figuring out how much my team would make and determine if any software was needed in order to provide this service. This leads me to thenext step, analysis.

Part 1 of 2 of Analysis:

In the this step you should analyze your business, every part of it. Know your numbers and your processes. Let’s talk about number first. Know how much each service or product takes to produce or provide and how much is the net profit. If you have a team you also need to factor that expense in as well.

For Example:

Let’s say you have a client (A) to whom you provide social media services for at $500/month. And just as an example, let’s say you are paying your team member $250/month. You also meet with the client every month for one hour so take into account your hourly fee (ex. $75/hour). Also, you have to pay for a scheduler software for social media and this runs you $50/month (for all of your clients). Now, let’s see what your net is on this service for this one client.

$500 – $250 = $250| less $75 = $175| $50 divided by 5 clients = $10/each client| $175 – $10 = $165/month. Your total net is one hundred sixty five dollars on this one client. By the way you should really do this on a worksheet, via Google or Microsoft Excel.

See Example On Google Worksheet Below:

[Example of Analysis – if you would like this workshop please email me at info@fearlessbusinessboss.com and mention this blog]

Part 2 of 2 of Analysis:

Your processes and systems need to be in order for you take the company to the next level. Analyze all of these. If you utilize a team have each team member double-check each one of their documented processes and systems to see if anything need be changed.

Exception: The only exception to this would be if you will no longer be offering these services. In that case it is important to develop and document well the new processes and systems. This is imperative. I cannot stress it enough, processes and systems can elevate your business or become the reason for its downfall if you are not careful.

tip:

I created the original processes because I set them up and started the business doing them by myself. Years later, when I had a team, much was changing and I could not keep up with every little change in software, or a process that was different. My solution: I asked each team member to keep their processes up to date. It only took them a minute or two if something new came up. It would have taken me countless hours to figure it out and document them all. Having the team member responsible also gave them ownership over the processes for those services.

Your next step is all about making decisions and choices. After you know your mindset is in the right place and you have completed the analysis on your business you will begin to make decisions in how you move forward. You set goals and steps along with tasks that were needed in order to accomplish this transition. So, it’s time to move forward and take the next step.

In step one mindset we discussed the “How” to grow and transition. Now is the time to make the choices needed to continue to grow and transition.

For Example:

When I was growing and transitioning into a digtal marketing agency I had to find a software that schedule our client posts but was not too expensive. This is when I discovered a little known (and new) software called Social Pilot. It was perfect because it offered the ability to post thousands of posts, gave them a portal to approve posts, as well as provided analytics.

The best part was the pricing because I didn’t want to raise the rates on my clients who were only starting to use these services (new from us). So, I gave them a try and moved from Buffer, who I loved, but was quite a bit pricier to move up from the subscription we had at the time, and didn’t look back. It worked out wonderfully. Of course there were a few hickups in the beginning like most software companies. Eventually these settled down and worked exactly how we needed it to work and provided clients with a seemless portal to add their social platform and approved posts monthly.

After you make the choices and decisions in moving forward next you will take action. This is all about the implementation. You begin implementing the changes (or transition) to grow your business.

Yes, there may be some growing pains along the way. Ask clients to be patient with any glitches (in software or in services). You should aslo get together with team well in advance of implementing changes. I suggest at least a few months ahead, and absolutely no later than one month out. The last thing you need is team members scrambling for the door and you are the one who has do all of the new services you want to provide. Be in clear communication with all involved in the transition and growth plan prior to the implementation.

As you take action you should find all calms down by month three if not earlier.

After everyone has settled in once implementation takes place then consider re-evaluating. I suggest waiting for 6 months but no later than 9 – 12 months. Once again evaluate the revenue, taking out expenses including your team. See if your revenue is in a better place. Have your sales gone up? You must dig into all of this.

I suggest also that you send out a survey to your clients that can be annomyous. Ask them to complete it and return it within a week. Ask questions such as how did the transition periord seem to you (well organized, somewhat organized, complete chaos). If they are a new client ask about their onboarding processes (did we make them feel confident in their choosing our company, somewhat confident, questioning what you are doing). Dig in and add questions that will help you discern if you need to make changes in processes and systems or software. Hopefully not in team members.

The final steps is living with your decision and loving it. This is, of course, after correcting any glitches, client issues, or team management problems. I do hope you get to this phase and are able to relax and work on sales for your new business. Enjoy it as it was hard work getting here.

Thanks for reading, I truly appreciate your loyality.

If I can help you grow and transition your business please reach out to me! I would love to help you. All you need to do is set up a Free 1-on-1 Mini Coaching Session.

with love from Tammy Durden of Fearless Business Boss

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