Running a successful business whether large or small always has challenges that are put on your plate. Because of this it is important to always have a clear understanding of why you are in business and what your goals are. This is something that should be communicated with your staff and customers on a regular basis because it helps keep everyone focused on your purpose. It also helps distill a job description down to a final group of finished products you expect from an employee or yourself.
At True North Vapor we have a concept called “Keep Putting It There” and its one important tenant of how we operate.
- Client loyalty is only as good as your quality, service and prices; so you have to keep improving them and putting them there.
- Product quality is only as good as your testing, quality control, and research and development with the intention to keep putting it there.
- Prices are only as good as your constant efforts to make your purchasing and shipping receiving departments as efficient as possible and keep putting it there.
- Service is only as good as your relentless communication and tenacity with problem solving and, you guessed it, you must keep putting it there.
This is a simple concept but something that is often overlooked by companies as they become more successful. You can look at a company as simple as a couple of employees who upon inspection will be often found able to handle many different jobs. It can also be applied to huge companies with many employees as each person is responsible for their own jobs and what products they are supposed to produce.
The crosscheck for a great company that can withstand the test of time is the ability to keep putting all of the products and services they are supposed to in the hands of their clients.
Often companies become complacent because they are “too big to fail” and the root of the problem to repair these things is to find those departments that simply stopped doing their jobs. For a company that is new you must be just as rigorous in these efforts as it’s often the first experience a customer has with you.
For those that have read this and said to themselves “that’s very obvious”, I am glad you feel that way but the real question is can you honestly say all your departments are doing this. For those of you that are having trouble in your business after a long string of successes; look for the spots that stopped putting it there and get them back functioning.
If you make a change in your company and suddenly your income and services go through the roof, you should quickly strengthen those changes more. If on the other hand a change creates a sudden crash in your business, you should quickly eliminate it without hesitation and go back to how things were before.
Nothing beats logical management through observation and statistics to match up with those observations. It is a fundamental to competent and efficient management.
The test of a successful manager when work is delegated to them is whether they can search out the following three points:
- When the business improves, find out why and strengthen it.
- When the business crashes, find out why and eliminate what was done.
- When department’s products or services suddenly stop being created get them back being put there.
If an employee does not feel their department is important, they will simply stop doing the job properly. Sometimes they will stop completely, and if not immediately helped back up, will suffer a crushing defeat because they realize no one noticed if they did a good job or not. Therefore you should constantly reinforce departments that are doing an excellent job and support them. You should also relentlessly stamp out under-performance as it can lead as an example to others that poor performance is acceptable. It’s one of the short hand secrets for a manager when repairing a company that seems to be slumping.
This is the root understanding for many of the following concepts:
- Statistics tracking
- Job performance tracking
- Job evaluation
- Commission systems
- Bonus structures
The list can go on with ideas that have been put in place to get employees to “keep putting it there”. You owe it to your company and staff to always be looking out for everyone’s best interest. This includes not only the employees but the health of the business as it is the tree that the fruits are picked from to provide the necessities and pleasures of life to all of those that help create it.
There are all sorts of incentive plans, but the reality is most people are not driven by money but instead some more deep seeded reason for taking the job in the first place. You owe it to yourself and the other employees when interviewing someone new to find out what that is. It is especially important when hiring employees for jobs you should be thinking about whether they will enjoy the work long term and if they can consistently keep putting it there.
If done correctly you can grow your company very efficiently and profitably while maintaining a balance with your staffs needs and desires.
I hope this helps!