Every entrepreneur wants to start a business with the mindset that they will one day need to expand. After all, that is a necessity that comes with success. While it is certainly a positive aspiration, it can be extremely challenging for individuals who have never had to take on such a demanding task.

To start, think of expansion as having come from a strong foundation. Obviously, scaling your business can only be done once your goods or services have been deemed valuable, thus requiring growth to continue that success.

Take a step back and make a note of the your average customer tenure. Do your customers leave after a short period of time to find business elsewhere? Are lost customers easily replaceable? A strong business foundation is dependent on retention and profit. With that said, the following business aspects should be closely examined before you decide to expand.

Customer Service

We’ve all heard the phrase “The customer is always right.” While this is widely considered too forthright for today’s business standards, there’s no denying that good customer service is absolutely vital to a company’s success. Effective business leaders know that operations are contingent upon the client’s happiness, and that simply losing them could cause irrevocable damage.

Expanding a business can only be done if it has hundreds, thousands, or millions of customers willing to spend money on its goods or services. While millions is unrealistic coming right out of the gate, marketing your brand as something that people want and need is a great way to reach a much broader audience. Look at Apple and the hundreds of incredible products they have developed over the years. They have become a staple in the tech world and are considered the most profitable company of all time.

Frequency of Mistakes

Being able to correct mistakes made on any level is a requirement for all businesses. The question is, how frequently are these mistakes being made, and are they resolved for good? If this can’t be managed on a smaller scale, it certainly won’t be more manageable upon expanding.

Mistakes are going to made. That is inevitable. Resolving these mistakes and ensuring they don’t occur again however, is up to you as the sole leader. This is something your customers and clients will pay attention to as well.

Level of Confidence

This may not be a measurable goal, but it carries a lot of weight in terms how much a business may be able to expand. A company can only grow as much as its founder wants it to. Because of that, a confident leader who aspires to expand beyond the realm of success is much more likely to get there than one who is afraid to take that next step.

The worst thing a business leader can do is become complacent. As Henry Ford said, “Anyone who stops learning is old, whether twenty or eighty. Anyone who keeps learning is young. The greatest thing in life is to keep your mind young.”