Singapore is considered a business-friendly nation. With its competitive tax rates, geographical advantage, and less complex jurisdictions, the country prides itself on the favorable benefits it offers to entrepreneurs. However, launching and establishing the business is just half the battle. Foreign and local entrepreneurs in Singapore would have to face the second half, which is growing their small and medium enterprises in a country with a limited market and workforce.
However, market size and workforce are just circumstances that every entrepreneur needs to learn to deal with. It is the mindset of scaling that is necessary, but one has to be prepared to scale before embarking on it.
Here are five useful business growth strategies you can try to prepare for scale.
1. Connect to customers to understand their pains in their experience
Brands vie for consumer attention. On the other hand, consumers look for the best product or service that resolves their problems and makes their lives easier. It’s safe to say that there is high consumer demand in any industry that any brand hasn’t closely perfected. Moreover, in countries like Singapore, where perennial developments are evident, customer pain points accumulate a longer list.
For example, if you’re in the financial consulting industry, see what consumers are raving about. Listen to consumer needs and pains. Perhaps they feel they are not being given a good deal, and that consultants are just after their commissions. Research what’s lacking in the market to find a pattern and learn to offer consumers what they need and want. Leverage this knowledge to innovate the manner of delivery of these products or services!
2. Don’t just digitize — digitalize
Many people interchangeably use both terms. However, there is a fine line that differs between the two.
Digitization is the process of converting analog files and information into digital ones. An example of digitization is converting photographs into JPG or documents into PDF files and storing them on your computer.
Digitalization is transforming manual processes into their digital equivalent, which means using digital technologies to replace time-consuming and tedious manual work. For example, you can send your colleague an email instead of sending snail mail. Another example is using Zoom video calls for meetings instead of face-to-face sessions. These methods should cater to companies and employees who are becoming more comfortable with hybrid work.
Many companies are turning to both, especially the latter, due to the influx of SaaS platforms. Moreover, incorporating digitalization in your organization leads to an increase in efficiency and productivity. On the other hand, your customers appreciate processes requiring minimal effort if you also digitalize customer acquisition. Overall, this gives employees more job satisfaction and keeps customers happy.
To be able to do this well, you need someone who can expertly define your workflows and structure them in order for any kind of automation to be viable.
3. Explore the global talent pipeline
Your people are your company’s best assets. Always remember that! However, Singapore has a skills shortage in some sectors. There’s a shortage in the tech niche, such as tech professionals and web developers. This is the reason why many businesses in Singapore outsource their tech needs overseas.
Finding the right candidate is like looking for a needle in a haystack. However, it doesn’t have to be a daunting and never-ending process. You have to know where to look. Quality and reliable freelance marketplaces such as Fiverr, Upwork, and OnlineJobs are the first avenues to search.
Talent is one of the most crucial business growth strategies, especially for small and medium enterprises. Sadly, not many SME founders know how to manage high-performers, which leads to top players jumping ship, and often, this is due in part to the nature of their business strategy and leadership style.
4. Leverage training and development
As mentioned, getting specific talents to join SMEs in Singapore is usually lacking, the reason why business owners outsource services overseas. But before you look far and wide, check within your organization first to see if you have talents that have yet to be unleashed. The only way you can do this is to use the TACAAA framework.
Conduct a Task Analysis, which entails jotting down your tasks and categorizing them daily, weekly, and monthly. The next step is to perform Competency Analysis, which means identifying the skills needed to accomplish those tasks. Finally, align the competency and task to the valued attributes in your company, which will shape your culture. If you want to know more about TACAAA, here’s a playbook that explains every step in detail.
This way, you’ll know who in your organization is fit to fill up these roles. The way to do this is to put people in the correct positions and test their satisfaction and competencies. It’s not appropriate to test only their competencies as some employees might be skilled at one thing but are not happy with what they’re doing, and you want them to be both.
Ensure that you cluster these so that you know what additional skills to train in your already skilled employees. Finally, don’t forget to implement learnings by linking them with KPIs. Once you’re hitting all the right KPIs, expect you’ll improve every business facet.
5. Join a local network
Network expansion is one of the essential business growth strategies. Networking in business allows 6/7 figure business founders to meet many people who will likely remember them or their business. Having extensive networks also lets you garner as many business leads and connections that will benefit you down the road.
However, some SME founders in Singapore neglect the valuable business networks available to scale their business. One of the trusted business networks that helps struggling 6/7 figure entrepreneurs in scaling their business is Super Scaling.
Super Scaling mainly caters to small and medium enterprise founders looking to scale their business to 7/9 figures. Have a discussion with us by applying here to get an assessment of your current situation. Once you have completed the survey, it also qualifies you to get a free consultation session with our Super Scaling coaches who will discuss your challenges and goals so that you can figure out the best ways forward in your scaling journey.