A big part of running a successful business is how well you manage your resources and how you effectively deliver your services and products. When I speak of productivity I talk not so much about efficiency as effective use of resources.
There are many opportunities day to day in which you can improve your productivity and therefore impact positively on your bottom line. The following are just 4 opportunities that you can exploit to improve your business each day.
If you have employees or staff and are occasionally hiring new employees, then having to conduct induction processes and training will feature in your business.
Training and induction are necessary components of an effective business. It does however take time and may take key staff away from their functional roles for some period.
All induction and training should be, at some stage, documented and systematized so that it has the least amount of impact on existing staff’s time. It will also reduce the amount of time spent on the learning curve for new employees. They will be productive sooner, and that’s a good thing.
Training and induction processes can be developed in document form, video, audio or all three mediums.
When A Customer Complains
A valuable opportunity to improve productivity and to reduce rework and waste is presented in every customer complaint. Hopefully this does not occur in your business too often. Customer complaints should not be avoided or looked on as a negative aspect of running a business.
On the contrary, this presents the driver to fix ailing processes or approaches. If followed through it will ensure that customer complaints are reduced whilst customer satisfaction improves.
When Mistakes Are Made
Whenever mistakes are made within your business, no matter how hard this may be to begin with, make sure you take the approach of looking for what went wrong rather than who is at fault.
By coming at the issue from this perspective you leave personalities out of the equation and focus on whether it is a training, process or management problem that can be fixed.
Often management blames employees for mistakes that are made, when they are an inherent part of the existing culture or systems. That’s right, some systems within businesses regularly produce mistakes until they are reviewed and fixed.
Even if your processes and procedures are not documented, what you do on a daily basis is still a “system”. Once documented you can monitor and improve the outcomes of a process or system.
If you find yourself doing something repeatedly, meaning more than three times a day or even a bigger event on a weekly basis, then it is time to document and systematize these processes.
Having a focus on reducing wasteful or repetitious tasks will cut the time taken to perform these tasks and therefore save money and frustration. Your task should be to periodically review your systems and look for ways to improve them.
You’ll never eliminate waste and rework, but you can minimize it and therefore maximize your use of resources and time.