(NC) According to recent Innovation, Science and Economic Development’s key small business statistics, women account for over a third of all self-employed entrepreneurs.

In fact, ISED studies over the last several years show women as innovators who are steadily increasing their impact on the business world.

But taking your business to the next level can be difficult. You have a lot to balance as an entrepreneur, and adding another element can seem daunting.

Being confident that your business is ready for growth is critical. Your business may be ready for expansion if sales volumes are steady and your trained employees can deliver your unique products and services.

By thinking ahead, you can mitigate risk and ensure your systems and processes are transferable or expandable. You can then decide whether to scale up or out. Scaling horizontally, or out, allows you to provide existing customers with a greater variety of products and services. Scaling vertically, or up, lets you provide existing products and services to more customers.

Exploring your options with an experienced advisor is an effective way to identify what’s right for you. Expanding your network to find the ideal mentor and reaching out to business support organizations tailored to women may also provide the support you need.

Some businesses are more suitable for scaling up than others. After examining the pros and cons of exponential growth, you can decide if it’s for you.

There are government services to help you along the way. Visit www.canadabusiness.ca or call Canada Business Ontario at 1-888-576-4444 to speak with a business information officer in English or French, weekdays between 8:30 a.m. and 5:00 p.m.

Canada Business Ontario is a program within the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario). For further information on federal economic development programs and services for southern Ontario visit FedDevOntario.gc.ca, contact them by email at info@FedDevOntario.gc.ca or call toll free 1-866-593-5505.

Attention editors: This article is for distribution in Ontario only.