Entrepreneurial Growth and the Big Picture

It is intriguing to see the characteristics that stay with entrepreneurs as they grow from a small to a medium sized business, and beyond.

Globally, we see the survivor mode from the startup world, in which the entrepreneur will take whatever work wherever it might be, in order to get paid. Then they move to being the center of all decisions made in the organization, being tactical and working the small things, but letting go of the big picture and the growth and the direction of the business.

Switching hats from startup entrepreneur to small/medium enterprise entrepreneur can be a struggle and many economic developers might not know how to work with entrepreneurs in this stage.

The key is to help the economic developer understand and see the big picture, and for the entrepreneur to let go of the little things that are keeping them from the growth they should be going after. This assumes, of course, that growth is desired.

Many want their business to be their lifestyle and there is nothing wrong with that.

For those who do want to grow, the trick is to think about the big picture. What I mean by that is thinking about where your company would be if you added another zero to the revenue? If you are servicing today in one location, what would it be like if you had ten, a hundred, or a thousand locations?

That kind of big picture approach will drive you away from the little details that you might be paying attention to in the small business today. While it is vital that you pay attention to it while you are in the small business world, it becomes a waste of your time as you continue to grow. Others can fill that gap for you.

So build your team with the people you feel and believe can take some of these responsibilities and know that mistakes will happen. You and/or your team can fix it as long as you focus on the big picture.


We see our blogs as opportunities for dialogue. Please share your thoughts as comments.

  1. What would the big picture be for you today?

  2. What small details or tactics can you let go of starting today?

  3. What other tools have you used to move from small operation thinking to big picture thinking?


Faris Alami is Founder and CEO of International Strategic Management, Inc. (ISM). He works internationally, presenting Exploring Entrepreneurship Workshops and other entrepreneurial ecosystem — related ventures.

Faris Alami