Lifecycle Stages

…and identifying your business.

Businesses go through natural cycles of creation, growth and dissolution – and not always in a straight line. To better understand where you are in your own lifecycle, here is a snapshot of all the stages at once. The formative stages have particular designations due to the important role these play in creating a solid foundation for a profitable enterprise.

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You either have an idea or are looking for one. There’s a lot that can be done to vet an idea, prepare for financial investment, and design the business before starting operations.


You have a product or service that requires investment to get started. You have all documentation to accept financial investment from bank loans to venture funding.


You have launched your product or service and are receiving and responding to feedback from customers. You have revenue and may or may not be profitable.


You have demonstrated product-market fit. You need to grow capacity to meet demand. You are discovering competitors. You have revenue and may or may not be profitable.


You have an established company with a clear portion of the market and devoted customers.


You are looking to move on from your business via selling, a succession plan and/or simply closing up shop.