As business owners, we’re told that we should work on our business, not in it. But how do you do that when you’re just getting started? How can you do that if you don’t have any employees? Here’s the secret …
At first, you work on your business by working in your business.
Mary-Lynn’s always trying to get me out of the business!
Seriously though, you begin working on your business by documenting your procedures, position by position, as you work in your business. Before you hire your first employee, it’s essential to put this structure in place so that, when you do hire someone, you can train him or her them effectively.
My favorite General Managers in radio had worked in all areas of the business. They had been on the air. They had produced commercials. They had sold commercials. So they knew the business because they had worked the whole business.
As a new business owner, you do that anyway, right? All you have to do is document what you do, position by position. Maybe you don’t do it all – you’re not comfortable with accounting, for example. So you get a partner who documents the procedures for those positions. Or you outsource them.
You’ll work through each position that your business will need. As you do, you will document every task that your business performs.
This leads to your employees OWNING their jobs
Now you’re going to build upon the work you’ve done. Put together two or more procedures and you have a process. Two or more processes start to build your system. You’ll end up with a full-fledged Operations Manual.
You get there by working on your business as you work in your business. Because while you’re doing that, you can test your procedures to make sure they are effective and efficient.
Assume you own a retail store. You would want to greet your customers as they come into your store. Here’s a typical conversation:
You: “Hi, may I help you?”
Customer: “No, I’m just looking.”
End of conversation.
Michael Gerber, in his great book The E-Myth Revisited, said he has consulted with retailers who increased sales by 10 to 16 percent when the following question was asked:
“Hi, have you been in here before?”
Now, if the customer says “Yes”, you can offer a special program for repeat customers. If the customer says “No”, you can make another offer for new customers.
So you set up one procedure to greet your customers. Then you test it. That’s working on your business. You’ll have a separate procedure to promote your special offer for customers. These two procedures are the beginnings of your process.
Keep doing this, procedure by procedure, process by process until you have a complete operating system. Document that and you have your Operations Manual.
Now when you hire an employee and start to train him or her, you can involve them in the process because you have it in writing. You’re ready for the five step process for training your employees.
Since you’ve tested your procedures, you can tell your new employee why you do things the way you do. This helps them understand the idea behind the procedure which helps get their buy in.
You’ll also tell your employee that your testing isn’t over yet. In fact, you want them to help you test new ideas. You’ll emphasize that it’s important to follow your system, but you also want them suggesting ways to improve how you do things.
That’s how you get employees who don’t just do their jobs; they own them!
|For more tips on how to succeed bigg, subscribe to
Subscribe to the Bigg Success Weekly – it’s FREE!
Next time, we’ll look at an inexpensive way for families to connect and compete. Until then, here’s to your bigg success!
(Image by tatlici)