Every business has problems, but many can be addressed before they actually disrupt the organization. In a reactive environment we deal with problems as they occur, and many times solve the same problems over and over again because we don’t make policies to eliminate them.
Making your business more proactive takes a different approach than addressing chronic troubles when they happen. If you’re tired of not operating under control, do like every successful franchise and create an operations manual. this labor and frustration saving tool requires a template, plus time, perspective and guidance.
Your goal of operating under control will require sustainable procedures and employee buy-in. At the start, you will still experience tactical problems that require an immediate solution. Handle them like you always have except, once fixed add the matter to a snags list alongside the solution and store the solution under the proper heading in the manual.
Operational processes include business development, operational systems, culture shift, and a progressive leadership function. Take the time to evaluate each platform, enlist the key players on your team and meet regularly on the most pressing topics. If it’s finding more customers do a competitor evaluation then challenge your people on ways to improve your offering.
Look at the culture in your company. Do you regularly evaluate your employees with reviews and ideas for improvement? Does your staff really understand the goals you have for the company, how growth will take place and what each employee’s role is in getting to your objectives? Look at absenteeism and turnover to determine why you might be losing your better players.
Find ways to optimize your operations. This includes better internal communications and interdepartmental relations. If you make stuff, find ways to do it faster and less expensively, or if you provide services, update your protocols and customer interface to assure a satisfactory experience by all customers.
Finally, examine your role. Are you a facilitator or tyrant? You may be the business expert in one or more areas of the company, but your first responsibility is to be an effective leader. Communicating goals, mentoring the team and creating a platform for operational efficiency are your core responsibilities.
Finally, consider the fact that implementing change is a functioning company usually requires skills that do not reside within that organization.