Growing Your Small Business: The Checklist

Want to take your business to the next stage of growth? Make sure you're prepared by working through this 20-point checklist.

Lifehacker's Supporting Small Business series, brought to you by Bankwest, provides expert tips and helpful advice on how to effectively manage day-to-day tasks and grow your business. For more free online tips, tools and calculators for business owners, visit Bankwest's dedicated Small Business website.

Note: this isn't an exhaustive guide, and every business will have specific needs. However, these questions will help guide you to areas where you can sensibly work on growing your business?

  • Do you have a formalised business plan?
  • Have you analysed your existing business data to identify current growth trends?
  • Are you confident you understand what is driving that growth?
  • Have you identified new potential areas or products to expand into?
  • Do you have market research that backs up your gut feel about those products?
  • Do you need to change or update your business structure?
  • Are there any regulatory issues that would block your expansion?
  • Are your existing premises suitable for your plans?
  • Have you identified sources of finance to help you expand?
  • Could you expand your business by franchising?
  • Who are your three biggest competitors?
  • Do you have a succession plan if you become unable to run the business yourself?
  • Do you have a disaster recovery plan to deal with outages and other emergencies?
  • Are all your business procedures documented?
  • Do you have regular training procedures for staff?
  • Do you have a mentor or business coach?
  • Do you have a detailed marketing and promotional plan?
  • Are you making full use of online platforms to promote your business, products and services?
  • Are your IT systems an effective support to your business?
  • Do you have an exit strategy for the business?

Picture: Dan Goodwin

IMPORTANT INFORMATION AND DISCLAIMERS The information contained in this report is of a general nature and is not intended to be nor should it be considered as professional advice. You should not act on the basis of anything contained in this report without first obtaining specific professional advice. To the extent permitted by law, Bankwest, a division of Commonwealth Bank of Australia ABN 48 123 123 124 AFSL/Australian credit licence 234945, its related bodies corporate, employees and contractors accepts no liability or responsibility to any persons for any loss which may be incurred or suffered as a result of acting on or refraining from acting as a result of anything contained in this report. Bankwest is not responsible for third party websites. They do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Bankwest, nor does Bankwest confirm their accuracy.


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