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Category - Procedures

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1
Starting A Small Business and Making Workflows Automatic
2
Training Your Employees For Your Absence
3
Clean Up Your Business While You’re Quiet
4
Operational Efficiency – The First Steps
5
A Challenge in Customer Fulfilment

Starting A Small Business and Making Workflows Automatic

Welcome back to our series on Starting a Small Business. If you have missed our earlier blog instalments, you might want to check on these:-

Starting a Small Business – Make Sure You Know Why

Starting a Small Business – What To Think About

Starting a Small Business – How Do I Start?

Starting a Small Business – With A Feasibility Check

Starting a Small Business – With a Plan

Starting a Small Business – Hiring Your First Employees

This week, we are going to look at how you can make some of your important workflows automatic so that you can boost efficiency in your startup.

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Training Your Employees For Your Absence

Unless you own and wish to continue to own a micro-business where you work on your own in your profession or trade, it is more than likely that as a small business owner you wish to expand and grow your business to the extent that you will be employing people as you grow.

Most of us who run and operate small businesses wish to grow in size – as our sales and profits grow, by necessity we need to scale and grow our workforce so that we can produce more, or meet more customers or provide more services. We are constrained by the number of productive hours we, or anyone we employ, can spend on producing goods or services. So we employ more people.

Some of the new people we employ may not be directly customer-facing. Indeed we may need more and more “back-room” hours from new people – keeping the books, managing the stores, manufacturing or working behind the scenes.

The question is, how do you introduce more and more people and continue to control and manage the business as more and more people do the things that you used to do?

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Clean Up Your Business While You’re Quiet

OK, so it’s early January; you’re still full from the celebratory food and drink, and you may not have opened your business in the New Year yet.

Even when you open this or next week, maybe because of the usual holiday period and a little virus it will be a bit quiet in these first few weeks.

Well, instead of doing nothing, how about taking advantage of this and cleaning up some things in and around your business? Now is a great time to tidy up inefficiencies, catch up on some administration, finish those new ideas you have, and make plans for the future.

Here are some of the things you can do around and in your business when it’s quiet.

First, you can sit quietly over the next couple of days and prepare your business plan for the coming year.

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Operational Efficiency – The First Steps

In my Small Business Owners Growth Guide, I identify the Six Business Success Factors.

In 40 years of working with small businesses, I have observed that all successful businesses do these 6 things well.

They are:-

  1. The Act of Leadership
  2. The Practice of Planning
  3. The Logic of Marketing
  4. The Pursuit of Customer Fulfilment
  5. The Attainment of Operational Efficiency
  6. The Mastery of Finance.

You can download my free Small Business Owners Growth Guide to the Six Business Success Factors here and “audit” your business to see how well developed they are in your business.

I’ve recently dealt with Leadership, Planning, Marketing and Customer Fulfilment in this blog, so this week I want to turn my attention to Operational Efficiency.

What do I mean by that?

I also want to set you a challenge that you can undertake over the next 5 days, taking just an hour a day to start your journey in Operational Efficiency.

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A Challenge in Customer Fulfilment

Customer Fulfillment usually refers to the process of delivering the product or service to the customer, involving “order fulfilment” methods such as logistics.

However, when I say customer fulfilment, I mean the whole system of ensuring that your customer is “fulfilled” in their engagement with you.

In other words, how fulfilled are they when they first encountered you, how easy was it to transact with you, whether they received their goods and services in the way and time that they liked, and what was their experience after the sale?

I take customer fulfilment to be much more than “customer service”.

It’s about total satisfaction.

In this definition, customer fulfilment is one of the six key factors that successful businesses must have to be successful.

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