From Caterpillar To Butterfly
Our Evolution Continues ...
Posted by Steffi Lewis on 19/03/2012
It's quite interesting how sblogit.com has developed over the past year. From our initial development phase through beta testing to enhancement and evolution, we're now at the point where the caterpillar yearns to fly and we're finding it really interesting to think about where we go next ...
from caterpillar to butterfly ... every business needs to evolve
It has been an amazing journey so far. We've gone from zero to one hundred miles an hour in such a short space of time. Although I founded our company in March 2011 it wasn't until August last year that our Beta testing completed and I started selling blogs commercially. Since Faz joined as a Director and shareholder in the New Year we've just been accelerating into orbit and now find ourselves with an interesting dilemma.
How do you balance editing blog posts for our current clients, designing new blogs for new clients and continuing to get out there finding more clients? The company has to grow after all doesn't it? All businesses need to find a way through this phase and we're no exception.
It's worked very well so far. Apart from designing new blogs, Faz and I balanced everything else perfectly between us but now there are days we're editing six new posts and that really is a lot of writing isn't it? It'll only get more demanding as the next few months continue and new clients come online which means that the editing is becoming a full time job and sometimes we have little time to do anything else.
So this week, we're working on The Phase 2 Plan. The document that will turn us from a caterpillar into a butterfly and allow us to move onto growing sblogit.com into the worldwide brand we know it will become.
So what is the end result of this next phase? Well, obviously I'm not going to give the game away from an operational perspective, but the vision we have for the rest of 2012 is for a completely virtual company with a number of editors working on posts for our expanding client base in the Milton Keynes area and a social media guru to look after our own channels on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+ as well as offer training and support for our clients. Everything else we need ... bookkeeping, telesales, telephone answering et al will remain outsourced for the time being.
Not a huge jump in size you may say but we both feel that this is the right way to grow the company during this phase and we don't want to get tied into leases on property when we'd rather stay virtual and spend the money on better equipment and packages for our team. We're all going to be Milton Keynes based anyway so we can get together whenever we need to.
By the end of this financial year I intend us to have a working 'machine'. You may remember that I'm a avid fan of The E-Myth and how every process needs to be defined in detail. Well, my personal project this year is to continue working in the business from an operational perspective but also to develop a new back end system that gives our team a lot more control and flexibility over sblogit.com and is an end-to-end system from lead generation to monthly invoicing - all at the click of a button. In addition there'll be a full Wiki that the team can evolve describing in detail everything we do. This will make it easier to initiate new staff as we grow faster toward the end of the year and will keep a consistent level of service in everything we do.
On a personal note, I've also decided to move house this year - around July in fact. You all know the legend of 'the slogit.com secret underground bunker' well it's feeling a bit cramped these days and never really being able to separate my work life and my home life, I need somewhere bigger so we can build a proper office space for Faz and I as well as being able to close the door and have a social life. I'd like to be outside of Milton Keynes in one of the villages, just for a bit of peace and quiet really.
So some seriously exciting - and even busier - times ahead for the both of us and it all starts this week with our first planning meeting on Monday. By the end of the week I want to have the structure of the company defined, draft financials ready to take to our accountants and an agreed set of steps that Faz and I will work towards completing over the next few months.
The sblogit.com caterpillar has already taken it's first tentative wriggles along the twig towards the sun. Over the next few weeks the butterfly emerges and shakes out its wings ...
... and then it really is time for us to fly!