Think of some of the biggest, most profitable companies out there. Which come to mind? Apple, Google, Starbucks, Disney, Southwest, etc. – at least one of those was probably on your list. What do these companies have in common? One of the biggest similarities is that the entrepreneurs working behind the scenes were able to scale their business. Becoming as big and successful as a company like Apple may seem impossible, but remember even Steve Jobs started in a garage. Below are some small steps you can take to get started.
Identify consumer needs and wants. You can’t create something that will sell if you don’t know what will sell. What do you see a need for in the area where you plan on opening your doors? Taking it further, is that need area-specific or widespread regionally, nationally, and even internationally? If the consumer doesn’t see how it will improve their lives, or make them happier, they won’t buy into it. If the need is only local, chances are your area will catch up with the rest of the world soon enough and the desire for your product or service won’t be there long. Think long-term when determining this.
Create a replicable sales model. Once you’ve identified widespread demand, you can design something replicable that will satisfy that demand. At Morningside Ministries for example, we created a very desirable environment for retired seniors in the community. We can recreate that environment by building more apartment homes with the same amenities, kind-hearted staff, and assistance that residents may need. If you’re in a different industry, find what works for you and make sure that you can repeat it.
Create a public profile. While this one is more about image than a strategic business model, it’s also very important. Steve Jobs is just as well known as Apple. Walt is just as well known as Disney. Participate in community events, create a strong online personality, and make sure that you are in control of your own public profile. A strong image will help your business grow.
Every business hopes to create a model that will scale. It’s no easy task, but it certainly is possible. Remember, don’t try to scale until you know you are ready. Perhaps most importantly, never be shy about seeking out help from those who have gone before you. You never know where even the largest business owners started out.
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About Alvin Loewenberg
Alvin Loewenberg is the President and Chief Executive Officer of Morningside Ministries. He is responsible for the oversight of nine senior care communities providing nursing care, assisted living and independent living, totaling 807 units. Loewenberg has been involved in long-term care administration since 1979. For the past 23 years, he has served as the President/CEO of Morningside Ministries. Loewenberg has held various positions of leadership at both the Texas Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (TAHSA) and the American Association of Homes and Services for the Aging (AAHSA).