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Scaling Sales and Delivery: Founder-Led Transformation for Sustainable Growth

Scaling sales and delivery is a crucial phase for a growing startup, a delicate dance that determines the business's trajectory. In the initial stages, sales often hinge on the founder's efforts—wearing multiple hats to both sell and deliver. However, as success comes knocking, a critical question arises: how does a founder-led transformation foster collaboration and create a sustainable system?

Example 1: Founder's Recognition and Strategic Partnership

Picture a startup that had thrived on the founder's dynamic approach to sales and delivery. However, with a game-changing deal on the horizon, the founder recognized a fundamental truth—they could no longer do everything alone. In a significant and strategic move, a seasoned service delivery lead was brought in as a partner.

This transformative decision was more than a shift in operations; it was an admission by the founder that scaling required a strategic partnership. By liberating the founder to focus solely on sales and product vision, this collaborative approach not only increased bandwidth but also instilled confidence in clients that promises made would be promises kept. Operations underwent a transformation, adopting a more structured and repeatable approach, clearing bottlenecks, and reducing the feast-and-famine cycle.

Example 2: Standardization for Growth

In another case, an established business in retail analytics found itself plateauing. The solution was unique for each client, resulting in a complex web of customized services. Recognizing the need for change, the business leader spearheaded a transformative initiative to simplify and standardize the offering into a Software as a Service (SaaS) model.

This strategic shift, led by the Managing Director, not only streamlined sales processes but also allowed for more effective service delivery. Applying for the application of the 'theory of constraints' driving continuos improvements, the operations team optimized workflows, resulting in a significant increase in EBITDA from 9% to 20%.

Example 3: Offshoring for Extended Service Hours

Acknowledging the changing landscape of retail, a business moved its contact center function offshore to Asia. This transformative decision, led by the new operations leader, enabled the company to extend service coverage to 24/7, meeting the demands of retailers operating across various time zones.

Emphasizing clear role definition and training, the offshored team became a valuable asset, expanding the tasks they could handle and contributing significantly to the business for the benefit of the greater business.

These examples underscore that scaling sales and delivery is not just about business growth; it's about a founder-led transformation, recognizing the need for strategic decisions, adding skills, business partners and resources that compliment the founder and expand the leadership capability that pave the way for sustainable success.

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1 Comment

Jon Teale
Jon Teale
Dec 19, 2023

Nice post Peter

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