With credit lines diminishing and debt rising, how does one go about paying for all the resources to grow?

It’s a common challenge facing many in the entrepreneurial community but it doesn’t have to be the roadblock that keeps you from investing in the right growth opportunities.

I’ve faced fear in this area along the way myself, especially when I take a risk that didn’t pay off. And you know what, it happens. As a matter of fact, I had a big one this year. Yep a bone-crushing, mind-melting, heart-sickening failure. I invested in a big risk for my growth and it failed, miserably.

But you pick yourself up, dust off and move on. With better information about what works and what doesn’t.

So before I cover the secret to paying for your growth, perhaps I should tackle an important principle about growth first.

Being a successful entrepreneur means taking financial risks. Knowing what risks to take (and which to avoid) is key. But you’ve just got to get your head around the fact that some things will pay off spectacularly and some will fail. Ask any major player in business and they will tell you the same.

What are some of the good risks you might need to take in growing your business?

- Starting to delegate or building a bigger team
- Investing in different or better technology
- Launching a new product or program
- Pursuing a new niche with your current offerings
- Getting office space
- Hosting a large live event or workshop series

Each of these (and the list could go on and on) requires an initial outlay of cash to grow your business. So what is the secret to getting your growth investment covered?

It’s actually quite simple. You have to know how to get a return on your investment. This can happen in one of two ways.

1. You create a way to pay for the investment BEFORE you leap.

2. You make a leap of faith and use the investment to RETURN your investment to you.

Both are popular strategies. One requires a bit more risk than the other. Now for the “how.”

1. Cover the investment BEFORE.

I’m not talking about getting an angel investor. I’m talking about being strategic. What would have to happen to cover that investment? Do you need to launch a program or product? Pick up a few extra clients? Get a paid speaking gig?

What most of us do is stop at the statement, “I can’t afford it.” Well that’s an opportunity killer isn’t it? The truth is at any given moment you choose what you can and can’t afford. If you believe you really need something you’ll figure out how to make it happen.

2. Invest in the RETURN.

When you make this leap of faith, you are putting the money out in advance with a plan of how to implement the resource to recover your investment (and hopefully at a profit.)

Now it comes back to: What will have to happen to cover that investment?

Let’s say you are going to outsource a function in your business like social media management. You know it will cost you $1,000 per month.

What will have to happen to make that investment a good payoff? $1,000 in new sales each month? 500 new leads? A new joint venture? By defining what a good ROI is, you’ll know if you are on track or not.

Action: For either strategy the process is the same. Identify the investment you will make (or have made) in dollars, set a tangible goal of how (# of sales, new clients, etc.) and create a proactive plan to pay for it. Be sure to set a deadline too.

The important take way here is to not get stuck at “I can’t afford it.” But rather see what you can do to get the return on your investment.

Author's Bio: 

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From Melanie Benson Strick - The Entrepreneur's Success Coach. I teach entrepreneurs how to stop feeling overwhelmed so they can create more money, more freedom and more prestige. Get your free report today so you can do the same.