There is no business that is ever done growing. There are always smaller stores to acquire or different people to hire. The moment that a company goes stagnant, it faces the risk of atrophy. It's best for leaders and employees to be forward-thinkers, using imagination and innovation to propel the enterprise forward. No matter what stage of the business-building phase your company is in, whether it's a startup or an established enterprise looking to expand, it's imperative that you deploy the best practices to get the most out of your time.

Build a strategy
As with any important business proceeding, it's imperative to have a strategy in place to accommodate the development. Going into a situation blind can be successful, but it's risky and could potentially hinder business in the future. As SalesHQ noted, having a plan ready helps you reach your target, whatever that might be. Moderate- to astronomically sized developments deserve to have a step-by-step strategy, even if they're just general outlines.

Unsurprisingly, the format of a good strategy should cover the basics – who, what, where, when, which, why and how. Team members should be involved in the planning process, as undoubtedly they will be assisting in procuring the client or speaking to various associates to help seal the deal for the company. Even if the plan for development won't require transferring funds or mergers, having everyone's support will most likely make the execution much more smooth.

Building relationships other professionals helps bolster development.Building relationships with other professionals helps bolster development.

The big picture
Sometimes, the big picture can get clouded or diluted by the thoughts of business conquests, but the true measure of an enterprise does not lie in the the number of propositions, but the quality. As Eric Grafstrom reported for American Express's Open Forum, deals should be made carefully. Making deals and having conversations with a wide array of companies and clients in a haphazard manner can lead to hasty decisions and bad word-of-mouth reputation.

Having a finger in every pie, so to speak, is only successful if done correctly and respectfully. Businesspeople talk, and professionals will discuss the conduct of other companies. Coming off as power-hungry or inexperienced can be detrimental to future deals down the line. Also, some opportunities are more lucrative than others, the source indicated, and only the best should be seized. A deal should make sense for the company in the long term, not just for the here and now. If the goal is clear, measurable and will benefit the enterprise next month and next year, then it's a viable option for the company.

Business development requires a level head and a strong set of negotiation skills. You wouldn't enter an important business meeting unprepared, and this is simply a meeting on a larger scale. Leaders looking to bolster development and build meaningful relationships with other companies should look into training seminars that focus on negotiation, influence skills and personal power. You are the strongest tool in your business's development, so ensure you're sharp and ready for action.