When you're growing a business it's critical to cycle between a focus on expansion and a focus on refinement.
This is what we call "bulking" and "cutting".
Bodybuilders cycle between a phase where they're focused on adding more mass - and a phase where they're focused on getting lean. They do this so they can become as strong AND as lean as possible.
The same exact concept applies to your business. You want it to be as strong (big) AND as lean (profitable) as possible.
Yet very few sellers cycle between these two phases.
Most sellers are perpetually skewed towards either "bulking" or "cutting".
This is because people are naturally biased in one direction over the other.
There are two poles (north and south), two directions (left or right) and two sides to everything...
And there are two "poles" that people tend to gravitate towards.
A. Possibilities, taking risks and growing. ["Bulking"]
B. Realities, refinement and operations. ["Cutting"]
(This is why business partnerships that include both types can be so powerful)
So what is the problem with having a bias to "bulk" or "cut"?
Well you NEED both to scale a big + profitable business.
When you have too much (and too little) of one or the other, here is what happens:
A. The business gets bloated and wasteful. It grows fast but it reaches a point where it implodes and falls back in on itself.
B. The business does not grow past a certain point. It may be efficient and profitable but it stagnates and hits a ceiling.
A bias towards "bulking" creates outcome A.
And a bias towards "cutting" creates outcome B.
So the magic is in "the mix".
I've been talking to my Apex Seller™ clients about this a lot recently - because it's an explosive concept.
Another problem I see sellers face is they try to do both at the same time. But "cutting" while "bulking" (and vise versa) just doesn't work...
Here is why:
You'll be doing things that counteract each other.
For example; you'll be trying to expand by launching new products and testing new advertising campaigns - while trying to improve your operations and increase profitability.
That is not possible, or at least it's extremely hard to pull off.
Because by nature... as you seek to expand you must invest into growth and you must "fail forward"... meaning you'll try things that don't work and you'll waste money in the process.
This is a MUST to grow a business. That's how you learn and that's how you move forward.
So it's critical to let this process unfold naturally and to move quickly, when expansion is your immediate goal.
When at the same time you're trying to cut costs and "fix" broken systems... and you're trying to hire people so you can handle more work... and you're trying to free yourself up so you can manage to launch those new products (etc)... it's a mess.
And it's terribly inefficient.
This is NOT the way to grow. You MUST cycle between a purposeful "bulking" and "cutting" phase.
I hope this inspires you to be more strategic and effective when it comes to scaling your business.
All the best.
Daniel and the team at Into Profits.
p.s. if you'd like to grow your business faster, make sure you check out what we're doing to help Amazon sellers scale.