GROWTH OR “GO-GO” PHASE
During this phase, the company is no longer surviving, rather thriving. It has a successful product or service. Employees are hired to keep up with growth. Existing customers are raving. Shareholders are getting excited. The future looks bright. But there may be trouble on the horizon.
As growth continues, people become spread thin. Work gets sloppy. The founding entrepreneurs are resistant to delegating duties and hiring managers and micromanage every phase of the business. The company cannot separate itself from dependency on the founder and the founder cannot separate herself from the business. If something happens to the founder, the company may be doomed. Given the stress and strain on the founder, her loss is a very real possibility. There is no succession plan in place. The company finds itself is ensnared in the “Founder’s Trap”, which can be the death knell of the company. Symptoms include:
- The founder makes every decision
- The founder works harder than everyone
- The founder is the only one overwhelmed about the business after hours
- The founder is not delegating authority
- Achieving growth only happens through the direct actions of the founder.
- The essential operations, systems, and teams are in chaos
- Team members, though willing to work are frustrated by the chaos
Unless the company can free itself from the Founder’s Trap, growth of the company will stagnate, as sales and customer acquisition flatten, if not drop. If the company wants to continue growing, changes to the management structure must be addressed.