Phases of the business cycle

Running your own business is a lot like raising a child. Ideally, you’ve thought about this decision a lot before making the choice to pursue it. When you dive into the business cycle, you witness the birth of your idea, and nurture your company as it grows. But just as some children grow up to be more well adjusted than others, as your company progresses through business cycle stages, it can either excel or hit a wall. Here’s what you need to know about ensuring your company makes it into its golden years.


When your business is in its infancy, it feels like risk is everywhere. Much like when you have to watch over a toddler so they don’t get into anything dangerous, you have to be vigilant in this stage of the business life cycle. During this time, you need to lay the foundation for your company. This includes honing in on your brand’s true purpose, finding a way to hire the right people and making sure you have the financial resources you need to succeed.

stages of the business cycle

Teen years

business cycle phases

By this point in the phases of the business cycle, you’ve got a hold on things, but nothing is set in stone. Conflict arises, but it’s often caused internally due to personnel problems or a lack of foresight, much like a teenager grapples with their view of the world. This is the time when your business seems to be growing at a massive pace. Don’t see this as a sign of long-term success, though. If you fail to plan ahead, then you’ll peak during your teen years, and no person or business wants that.


Your business is starting to hit its stride. To succeed throughout its adulthood, you need to decide where you want your business to go and figure out what systems need to be in place for this to happen. Are you efficiently hiring, and firing, employees? Have you discovered a way to run your company without needing to be there all the time? You’ve gained a great deal of experience not only in your industry, but as an entrepreneur. Now is the make or break time to determine what that experience can do for your brand.

business cycle stages

Aging gracefully

company experiencing the phases of the business cycle

The key to running a business through its many stages is knowing when to bow out gracefully. Have a clear exit strategy in place from the get-go, and recognize that you need to be able to leave the company for it to be successful. If you’re running an operation that requires you to be on-site every day, then you’re not running a business – you’re coming in daily for a job. Only when you can stand back and trust your team to carry out the everyday business, while having enough cash flow to remain financially free, can you truly call yourself a successful business owner.

Death comes to your business when you lose sight of your vision. Your dreams are no longer reachable, and you’re lacking the employees and customers supporting your brand to stay successful. Don’t let it get to this point. You have the potential to run an incredible company that succeeds for years to come. Stay true to your vision and find the internal and external support needed to achieve your goals.

Excel during every stage of the business cycle

Learn strategies to create long-lasting success for your company during every stage of the business cycle with Tony Robbins’ complimentary Seven Forces content series.