Everyday business management can become a struggle if your company is changing too fast. Many people go into business because they have a passion for something, whether it’s painting houses or building robots, that they can make money from. Learning organizational skills comes second. A profitable pastime can grow into an unpleasant routine of administrative tasks and problem-solving.
If you come to a point where you feel things are slipping beyond your control, it’s time to reorganize and revise the way you do business. Here are some ideas to revise your operations and meet your business goals.
Look at every function in your business and make sure you understand both unit and overall workflows. For each task, you should have a clear process for where the work comes from, what is done with or to it, and where it gets sent when the task is completed. This should apply to everything from checking in raw materials to safeguarding customer transaction records.
For instance, work orders come from sales and go to production control. Production control coordinates materials and timeframes with purchasing and the warehouse, and so on. You should know what steps are taken in each department.
The goal is to gain transparency throughout the organization so you can better define job descriptions, assign responsibilities, determine capacities, and increase efficiency.
Identifying and carrying out tasks in terms of priority is something that should be established in all departments. Ask what steps should be taken in what order to best satisfy responsibilities. For example, you don’t want to set up a packing and fulfillment line until you verify that you have all the needed product, boxes, and packing materials.
You should list out and prioritize all tasks, on a daily, weekly, monthly, or even quarterly basis, which can include things like maintenance checks or progress reports. If every manager, supervisor, and employee knows exactly what needs to be done and when, they can manage their time better and reduce the chance that important steps are missed.
Checks and balances should be put in place to ensure everything is being done and done correctly. Following up helps to ensure that procedures are being followed to meet company policies and satisfy customers. This can include quality checks, filing cost and labor reports, customer surveys, feedback, and built-in verification steps.
Checks are especially important in handling financial information. Your company will be losing precious time and money on inaccurate billing or over-spending. Poor record keeping and failure to catch mistakes could negatively impact your business decisions, expose you to regulatory fines, or alienate customers and vendors.
They key factor in making all of this work is your employees. The staff that is more engaged and motivated will be more productive and focused. Allowing them to become dissatisfied will lower their quality and commitment.
Performance isn’t something that can be forced, or it leads to poor morale and high turnover. The average cost to replace a single employee is about $4,000. Provide employees with incentive, whether it’s a small gift or job advancement. Dedicated employees want to grow, and you can encourage that with opportunities and training.
Strategic coaching, for instance, is an ongoing learning process that also helps to identify challenges before they grow into major problems. An expert coaching team can optimize your team for better work and personal habits, such as effective communication and cooperation.
Running your business is enough of a challenge without letting any part of it get disorganized. The better you plan and prepare your team and processes, the easier and more profitable workflow becomes.