Prepare for Success
Small business owners whose primary focus is growth often overlook the most critical aspect of building a prosperous company with a peaceful environment.
I’m reminded of the old adage, “the dog that caught the car.” Likewise, business owners need to prepare for success, in case a massive opportunity comes along, i.e., a multi-million-dollar account.
Okay, so they’ve “caught the car.” NOW WHAT?
In our formerly-owned, commercial printing company, that exact situation happened. Without warning, a huge account, printing for Nintendo, was in our paws. Thankfully, we were ready to go, ready for this opportunity to double our business overnight.
You see, we “caught the car” AND knew what to do with it!
Because we had implemented TQM (Total Quality Management) several years prior to landing the Nintendo account, we were prepared for success.
In a short amount of time, we went from 12 to 25 employees. More importantly, because of our QUALITY SYSTEMS, we never missed a ship date, nor had any job rejected.
ZERO ERRORS! That’s the truth.
How to Prepare for Success
To prepare for success: making the all-important DECISION to organize your business systematically without compromise or any thought of retreating is vital.
To begin systematizing, a business owner should envision how their business will look and operate with five, 10, 25, 50 or more employees. In other words, not how the business currently looks and operates, but how they envision it in the future.
Consider, a business having only ONE technician and then suddenly needing FIVE technicians to handle a wave of new business. To be sure, when that happens a business without good systems WILL experience considerable disorder.
For example, a technician needs a detailed Quality Control Checklist, a step-by-step procedure for the work they perform. Also, a Technician Daily Routine Checklist, which is a list of prompts for key work responsibilities. Add to that, a comprehensive Company Orientation System for technicians; whereby, they can hit the ground running.
These systems manage the technician, and keep him/her on track, without the owner’s constant supervision.
Do you see how these systems save owners or managers a lot of time, instead of the usual verbal-only training? Without systems that PROMPT a technician to the next step, management becomes overwhelmed, should there suddenly be FIVE technicians to oversee.
Also important to remember is, as growth occurs, errors and miscommunications occur exponentially. Whereby, the possibility of losing the newly acquired account increases.
The good news is, when rapid sales occur, with good systems in place, it’s only a matter of scaling systems to merge the new growth, without suffering the pain of chaos.
One last thing to consider: a comprehensive Operations Manual is how national franchise businesses grow to multiple locations, without the agony of disorganization.
Did I mention? Great systems work for those chasing objectives bigger than themselves!
Philip Beyer, founder/president of Ebiz Products LLC and founder of Beyer Printing Inc. in Nashville Tenn., is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant. Author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business" and recipient of an InterTech Technology Award for the design and development of System100 business process management software. Beyer speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses. Contact him at (615) 425-2652.