Life-Stages of a Successful Business

As a business owner or manager, you face countless decisions in the day-to-day operation of your enterprise. You’ll experience better success when you understand how each decision, policy, procedure, or process relates to your long-term goals and current business stage.

“He’s a zero to two guy!”

“She’s great at three through five, but don’t get her involved any sooner.”

Have you heard phrases like this and wondered what on earth someone was talking about? In all likelihood, they are describing the lifecycle of a successful business.

Every business operates across a continuum of stages – typically described using a scale from zero to ten. Having a proper perspective provides you with the confidence that you’re not making decisions in a vacuum and that you’re helping to keep your business on track.

Business Lifecycle - 0 - 10 Linechart

As you’d expect, no business goes from zero to ten without at least a few other steps on the continuum. Thinking about a business in terms of its life cycle stage gives a business owner or manager a healthy perspective from which to evaluate decisions and priorities.

Think of the scale of stages in four primary groupings:

Business Lifecycle Stages (0-2: Startup, 3-5 Operations, 6-8 Expansion, 9-10 Exit)

The stages of any given business are NOT necessarily linear, but the vocabulary of stages helps you couch your understanding in the overall context of your business’s life cycle.

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