Well it looks like Spring has finally arrived after a very long and cold winter. In my home, that means it’s time to break out the rakes to clean the mess that Old Man Winter makes in our backyard every year. It means de-winterizing the house. The arrival of Spring is also a time to reexamine, renew, and refresh. And these are things that all organizations in all industries can do.
That’s not to say that renewal shouldn’t be an ongoing process for business. It certainly should be. However, despite that constant process of improving and creating, there are always those few things that keep getting pushed back “until another time.” In my dealings with clients, there are 3 primary tasks that always seem to take a backseat. Perhaps you can relate to them. Let’s take a look:
Perform a thorough audit of operations. For clarification, “operations” in this sense means production, delivery, resolution, vendor relationships, contracts, etc. Again, the business of “operations” never stops. Nor should it. But how many times do you get so caught up in the minutiae and daily grind that you neglect to take that bird’s eye look at the entire picture? Could you spend a few hours or a few days in the coming weeks to closely examine what’s been happening, where you’re falling short of goal, and create a plan to make sure that everything is on track? Keep in mind that this audit is not just for the executives in the corner offices. Department heads, senior managers, etc. should perform this kind of examination for their respective departments or divisions.
Take the pulse of the employees. This is very important. It is crucial that you take some time to talk to your employees about how they’re feeling, what they’ve accomplished, what they’re hearing from the organization’s patrons, etc. If employees feel like they are in the “forgotten cubicle,” they won’t be as productive and may not be effectively communicating your organization’s value proposition.
Thank your most loyal patrons. Remember the 80/20 rule? 80% of your business comes from 20% of your patrons. But the 20% know how much you appreciate their patronage right? Perhaps but this isn’t always the case. In the next few weeks, take out your pen and write some personal notes to your most loyal patrons. Let them know that you are aware of the impact that their business has on the organization. If they are business owners themselves, ask how you can help them grow their own organizations. That goes a very long way.
What are some other things that you can do? Leave your suggestions and comments below.
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