So when it comes to looking at any business and what makes them successful then there are three things you need to focus on which I like to call the 3 P's. These apply to any business, organisation & charities alike.
Your people should be pretty up on the lists of priorities, without engaged trained or dedicated people your dreams for a successful business , organisation or charity will not be possible.
People in your business are key to pushing forward business strategy, customer engagement. Ive seen it so many times where the companies employees are just seen as assets "human resources". They are more than mere resources like a computer , vehicle or machine. All too often we pigeon hole them it to widget per minute figures or sales per day. Now I am not saying we should not measure far from it I love KPI I love targets, but when the outcome is all we focus on then, we devalue the person and dilute their effectiveness.
It vital then to interact with your teams, treat them as you want to be treated yourself. Motivating people to do their best does not always involve financial incentives. Just think as a leader or business owner what motivates you get out of bed on a cold winters morning and make the effort to get to the office, it's not just about the money.
Without going into too much detail different generations are motivated by different thing, have a look at what makes generation x - y -z tick. They all have different veiw's on the world and what motivates them
make your people feel as important as your customers!.
Process, every business needs process when ignored or not updated then chaos, inefficiency and quality output are at best a lucky outcomes.
What I have observed is generally a business will grow from the original owner, where the process is known by them and the initial team. It works because they just all know what to do when to do it and what the outcome looks like.
When business begin to grow employ more people and begin to diversify as an example, the known process system begins to break down. Different departments or people in the organisation will interpret what should be happening and when, getting it wrong. It's the one place I normally review when I go into a business, try to map out the "day in the life" of the operation and department. It serves 2 purposes , I get to understand first hand what is really happening at ground level, what the people perception of reality is. The second purpose is it identifies gaps in the process and can highlight some process improvement ,thus removing the current problem the company faces. By reviewing process and ensuring everyone knows what happens and when then the resulting improvement is a consistent outcome (unless something changes).
When was the last time you reviewed your process, try asking various people to explain the process for their area you could be surprised
People don't like to talk about profit it's seen as something to keep private. However it's the only reason a business exists or can continue to exist. Even a charity has to generate a ROI (return on investment) how else are they able to help the people or the issue they were set up to support.
Without profit your business will fail, focussing on turn-over as an example without understanding if that turn-over generating a profit then you could have a multi-million-pound company, generating less profit than a company taking a few thousand a year. "turn-over is vanity profit is sanity"
Understanding how much a product or services cost you to produces is important. Let's say you are delivering a training course and on the day you invoice £500 not a bad amount of money for a few hours work. However if your travel to the venue, Hotel stay because it's away from home, the cost of the venue and materials you use on the day comes to £510 then it was pretty much a waste of time and you will not survive for long. There are obviously some exception you may choose to do some promotional events but as long as you know what that means in the bigger picture then it's acceptable.
Knowing your business numbers is vital, if you don't know them or the levers that affect them. You are blindly working without truly knowing what is happening to your company or operation. If you have ever seen Dragons Den one of the first questions they will receive, "tell me your forecast and your profit".
It is worth noting that cash flow, the amount of cash you can get your hands on quickly is very important. A very profitable business can go bust if the fee or sales come in too slowly and debts or liabilities have be settled. Keep a watchful eye on cash flow, payment terms both coming in and external,they need to balance.
I have a 2 step rule for business
Rule 1. If what you are doing is not generating a profit or losing you money "stop doing it"
Rule 2. See rule 1
- Review you 3p's thanks for reading comments welcome