Small business ideas for managing your team - One of the most important small business ideas that I would share with anyone looking to start a small business or grow a current small business is to ensure that you are really clear that your team know what they need to do and how you want them to do it.
Let’s face it you can’t expect that your team – your employees and even contractors – will understand how you want things done and by when. They usually only work for 8 hours in a day and you can’t expect that in an office or work site that they are going to work solidly for those hour 8 hours so you need to ensure that they know:
Before you start you need to be clear about what your immediate priorities are. What is going to get your business the results that make the biggest impact?
If answering the telephone and customer service is the reason why your administration officer or receptionist is employed then this would be the biggest priority for that position in your business.
If ensuring that your finance officer pays suppliers on time and gives you a weekly report of the finances so that you are on top of where this is at … then this is this persons biggest priority for that position in your business.
Whatever the reason and whatever gap you were filling to employ that person should be their main priority and everything else that they are requested to do should come after that.
There are going to be additional priorities after that but I would list them in order and have that list where they can see it constantly so that they understand clearly what is most important to you.
Here's a link to a great article about small business ideas managing your team's personal work priorities.
Ensuring that your team member knows what they are responsible for and holding them accountable to that responsibility is vital for them to understand where they stand when there are conflicting priorities.
I put together an action plan with all actions in order of priority for all team members so that both of us are aware of what they are working on and they can report to me on a weekly basis with an update of where it is at. This holds them accountable to the things that they are responsible for.
Now obviously there are going to be times when they will need to be flexible – we are in small business after all and there is always something new to be thrown into the day - when they need to understand that something that is more important at that time needs to be dealt with. This would be where you would need to spend some time discussing this with them and you may need to provide additional support or staff for them
On the Action Plan that I use to monitor the progress of my team member against their responsibilities there is a column for “By When”. This can have a date or it could be weekly or it could simply be ongoing.
This keeps them accountable to the timeline that I expect. I also mention that if they are not able to complete by the required timeline that I need to be advised as soon as they are aware that it is not going to be done.
There is also a column for “By Whom”. There may be a number of team members involved in a certain priority/process and they can see who is involved in all parts of the process and who they need to update along the way.
I share my action plan word template in my 7 day small business course. You can access the course by entering your details below. Click here to view the sample Action Plan template which is very basic but can be used across all your team members in your business (including yourself! I use it to keep me on track with my priorities)
I will always put together a list of instructions for how I would like something done. An office manual or a Procedures Manual will have all instructions that I have put together for all parts of the business.
These lists of instructions are not a complex document but a simple list of Step 1 do this, Step 2 do that … it just gives them guidance on how I would like it to be done. It is also something for them to refer back to after we have done the initial training about it. This is how it works:
This is constantly an opportunity to improve any systems and processes in the business and gives the team members the opportunity to be involved in the process therefore giving them more responsibility for the task that they are working on.
After owning and managing small to medium businesses for over 18 years
Tammy Love is Ms Small Biz -- she has a love/hate relationship with
business! She knows first hand that it is really exciting to grow something and
provide the best possible service/product for customers but yet it can
also be tiring, hard and down right exhausting! She
also knows how lonely that it can be being a business owner. She is using her website | Facebook page and Twitter to help others achieve their dream of starting or getting through the beast that is small business!