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Unlocking business expansion with this strategic framework

Wais Shaifta
November 28, 2023

Written by Wais Shaifta, Samaipata Operating Partner expert in International Expansion and Operations. CEO of PrivateDoc, Chairman of The Gym Group, ex-CEO Push Doctor, ex-JustEat, ex-Treatwell. Find out more about Wais here.

“We are at the stage of scaling operation teams, but where do we start and how do we do it in a strategic way?”

There comes a time within your business where you realise that your team needs additional skill set and expansion. Typically, product-market fit has been established and the opportunity to grow revenue and profit is there. Personally, the key revenue hurdles for me are hitting your first €1M, then €5M and then double digit millions and beyond. With each one of these stages you would need to set a framework on how to jump those hurdles. That framework becomes instrumental usually after hitting your first €1M with some funding, either a large seed or Series A, for the team to execute. Based on that plan, you will be best equipped to make a decision on resources. I have found this is applicable on whether your business is software, marketplace, retail, service etc. 

That being said, there are certainly a number of different methodologies to ensure you give you and your company the best opportunity to grow and scale teams in a strategic way. It is important for you to take a step back, particularly prior to hiring, and focus on what needs to be achieved. I see many teams putting together a 5 year plan with a budget, which, more often, than not doesn’t succeed. Based on experience, it appears 12 month deliveries based on 3 year forecasts are actually more effective... 

Therefore creating a framework with 12 month deliverables and underpinned by a 3 year forecast is key. A model that we’ve found works well across numerous different businesses is called  “KGIs, Ms, Os and Culture”.

Breaking down KGIs, Ms, Os and culture

So lets breakdown and define all of the abbreviations above:

  • KGI - This is your Key Growth Indicator. This is the metric which shows the growth of your business. This is typically a booking number
  • Ms - These are your missions 
  • Os - These are your objectives
  • Culture - Self explanatory but the goal is ultimately scaling with a successful performance culture. 

An illustration of this can be shown below in Fig 1. 

Fig 1

It is important to have a mission statement that ALL employees are aware of and rolls off the tongue. Generally, best practice with the above is that the “Ms” should compliment the KGI. Typically the format would be as follows; the KGI is followed by a mission which has a revenue number, another mission that indicates customer growth, another addressing supply growth and potentially another that shows your geographical growth, whether that be via countries or local cities. 

We have found that assigning the Ms to the executive team, who act as sponsors for those Ms, works well. Following that, the Executives then work with their teams to create the objectives that sit beneath the Mission.

To ensure the mission’s success, the objectives should be owned by members of the team, whether they are executive +1, +2 or further along the chain. This widens the involvement from the team and allows your rising stars to own and implement the strategies.

Like all good frameworks, it is important to have regular updates and take action as soon as needed. The below (Fig 2) is a helpful one-pager to summarise each objective and its status at each update. It’s up to you how often you hold updates, but best practice suggests weekly with the closer team and fortnightly with the more broader team. Needless to say, the culture underpins the company and the success of this approach. The ideal scenario is that you will have a fully aligned team, who all understand what needs to be achieved and implemented for the success of the company. At the same time, you will see the gaps that you need to recruit for. For example, someone who owns an M or an O may not be the right fit and as you identify these gaps in the organisation, it will help you specify the individual or talent you will need. 

Fig 2

It should be noted that the above should not replace KPI dashboards, product roadmap etc, but rather something which creates unity and clarity to the team so that they understand how their daily work contributes to the KGI and overall strategy of the company.

The journey of growth is a challenging one but one of the most exciting, and implementing the KGI, Ms, Os and culture is just one of the first steps. It helps the business to prioritise work and resources towards specific and attributable goals. What is truly powerful and special in this process is when every member of the team knows exactly their role and how they contribute to the success of the company - this usually creates an amazing culture and company growth story. 


About the Author

Wais Shaifta is a true titan of international expansion and operations in the tech industry. He played a critical role in expanding the operations of Just Eat all over the world as one of their earliest employees. Since then, he has continued to set the standard for excellence, serving as the COO and CEO of Push Doctor, a leading healthcare platform that connects patients with doctors. He has also served as the Director of Global Operations at Treatwell. Wais currently serves as the CEO for PrivateDoc and as the Chairman for The Gym Group.

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