Strategies for EXPANSION
In the history of our growth from PolyJohn’s first foothold in Europe to a rapidly growing international operation, we have taken a route that any corporation can follow to grow and develop new geographic markets.
Although we didn’t see the connection at the time, our route to expansion follows some of the same principles that history teaches us were used by “empire builders” before us. Think of how England and other countries settled the New World. They sent out “explorers” (salespeople), who began to trade with the natives (customers), who then set up colonies (partnerships, distributorships, or branch offices), which grew into new territories with allegiances to the founding country (your business).
How does this apply to your portable restroom company? Well, you have to decide how you are going to grow. Are you going to control a central location and spread, the way Napoleon did conquering everything in his path. Or, are you going to branch out, avoid strong competition while looking for opportunities in underserved areas? While both strategies can be successful, we have found the second strategy most productive for us.
We could have stayed at home and battled our competitors to become the dominant player in the U.K. and perhaps we would have been successful. However, I doubt we would have gotten much further than our own shores. Instead, while we grew at home, we also looked around Europe, and eventually around the world trying to find underserved customers who wanted our products and services.
Are your salespeople battling stiff competition in your geographic area? Then look around the region and see if there are other places you can send them to find new customers. In other words, explore. Go to where the customers are, rather than fighting your competitors for them in your current territory.
There may be places within driving distance where you can open a branch office or buy a small operation that has more growth potential than the area you are in now. Do you have a good manager who you can trust to run a branch? It would be a wonderful opportunity for him or her and it may be just what your business needs to get to the next level of success.
After all, history shows what happens to the Napoleons of the world. Their empires can’t be sustained and their competitors eventually over-whelm them. However, while the British Empire no longer exists it lasted for hundreds of years and its influence is still felt around the world today. Our former colonies became our strongest trading partners and allies while the English language has become the global language of business.
Recently PolyJohn, UK changed its name to PolyJohn International to reflect the changes in how we are operating and expanding our operation. Within the last few years we have developed new partnerships, distributorships, and branch offices around the world. This year we opened an Asia-Pacific office in New Zealand run by Chris Sharp, and we will soon open another office in Sydney, Australia. If you would like to learn more about our international operation visit us at our new website: www.polyjohn.co.uk.