Over the past several weeks, we’ve taken a deep dive into our Member 360 tool, one of the multiple proprietary business tools that we make available to our CEOs and business owners. This week the series continues as we look at Systems.
Taking a more in depth look at each topic and rating your business in each area is important for the health and growth of your company. Systems in your company is just one piece of the Member 360. If you haven’t seen the full evaluation tool, you access the full MEMBER 360 here.
This week, we’ll look at the SYSTEMS questions and why they are important.
Do you employ systems to help run the business?
Systems are critical to any business, both large and small. Systems are the building blocks of your company, and should be in place for every facet of the business from production, marketing, sales, human resources, accounting, and more. By developing and implementing business systems, you can dramatically improve team performance and consistent results, all while reducing costs and increasing profits. “The E-Myth Revisited” by Michael Gerber, is a great read on this topic. As the owner or CEO, great systems make the company/business not dependent on you or your presence. You should strive to build systems that tie all organizational parts to your business mission, goals, strategy. Most smaller businesses fall short in this area. How does your company rate?
Are your employee roles and responsibilities to support the business functions clearly defined?
It’s a problem at many levels if you have employees who are unclear of their roles and responsibilities in the company. Start by looking at your organizational chart and job descriptions. If you don’t have both, start there. Once you have them, ask yourself some hard questions. 1) Are they clear and understandable (to the employees)? Do they interconnect your team in a way that focuses on your business goals and metrics? If you asked your employee to tell you exactly what their job is and how it helps your company, could they articulate it? If you aren’t sure about the answers to these questions, you may have some work to do.
Do you regularly consider outsourcing options to reduce expenses and increase efficiencies?
Often the biggest barrier to outsourcing is the perception that you are losing control of part of your business. It can be tough to give up control as a leader, but outsourcing various systems in your company can really reduce expenses, HR costs, training costs, and other overhead. It may not make sense to outsource certain critical functions, but it’s worth your time to analyze your systems to determine what CAN be outsourced. If you do outsource, give yourself high marks here.
Do you use up-to-date technology and ensure that all of our systems are compatible?
Remember how many companies in the 1980’s and 90’s first resisted email communication? Remember how smart phones changed the business world? Staying up-to-date with technology is a constant challenge, but if you are not up-to-date you the run the risk that your competitors are. Business technology changes, by nature, should be focused on improving your efficiency and productivity. Use caution in adopting new technologies without analysis of how they will work with existing systems. It’s important to stay up-to-date, use automation as much as possible, and ensure technologies are compatible throughout your systems. How does your company rate here?
Do you regularly review your systems to ensure they are efficient and effective?
Often a business will implement systems, they work, and then they don’t receive proper scrutiny after a period of time. Successful business systems must be reviewed and evaluated on a regular basis to ensure they are doing exactly what you need them to do…free up time, increase profit, improve your company’s performance…you get the idea! Again, technology changes rapidly … if you aren’t reviewing your systems, how will you know when they become archaic relative to what new technologies make possible?
Do you have processes for the majority of what you do, and are they documented?
If you do have systems employed for your business, are they in place for everything you do? Large companies over time will build a system for nearly every aspect of the company, but smaller businesses may still have some work to do here. One other area a small company may need to work on is the documentation of your business systems. Do you have operation manuals for every area of the company? Are they understandable and usable by new employees? If selling the company down the road is a goal, than having great operations manuals are very important.
Does everyone have the right tools to do their job adequately?
Do you have an honest and open feedback business system in place for your employees? If you do, then you should have a pretty good answer to whether your team has the tools to do their job adequately. Are you having retention or high turnover problems? What’s the sense of your company’s morale? If your employees are feeling like they don’t have the right tools to complete their job requirements, these are all indicators. If your culture is one of your strengths, then you will have an easier job identifying any problems!
Our MEMBER 360 is an incredibly valuable tool when you look at each question in depth, as we have done here. This is the type of exercise we go through in LXCouncil meetings with our CEOs and business owners. If you’re a CEO, business owner, or entrepreneur who really wants to build a wildly successful business, you need more than a dream — you need a dream team.
Simply put, that’s what LXCouncil is … it’s a dream team comprised of other business owners, just like you. Peer advisory councils are an entrepreneur’s secret weapon. Members gain access
to knowledge and insights that their competitors often lack. That extra edge can really make
a big difference in how a company performs in a competitive marketplace.
If you are interested in learning more about becoming part of a peer advisory council, let’s start a conversation!
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