It’s that time of year when most individuals, entrepreneurs, and company leaders launch new ideas and declutter the remnants of old ones.
In the CEO’s office, plans for the new year are being executed, and analyses of the previous year are being examined along with year-end reports.
In accounting, new budgets are in place, while reports are analyzed from the previous year and taxes are being prepared.
In HR, this year’s goals and initiatives are underway, and records from the previous year are being filed.
Organization is important at all levels and across all companies. From the solopreneur in a home office to the CEO in the corner office of a Fortune 500 company, order in space and functionality is key.
Why is it important to be organized in your business?
Being organized is not the end goal; it is the means to an end goal.
A company that is organized well can execute new ideas swiftly and prevent issues that require remediation or result in lawsuits. Organization saves time and money, and lessens stress.
The bottom line of organization is that it directly impacts the bottom line of the organization. (Tweet this.)
If you have visited your local vending machine with any measure of frequency, you have likely seen a sign that says, “Out of order.” That means…”It is not working.”
If your business is “out of order,” it means something is not working. Ignore this for an extended length of time, and you could have major issues. There’s a reason bankruptcy is called “re-organization.”
How can you better organize your business this year?
As the leader of a small business or large company, the applications are similar.
Review where you are right now. Examine what is working, and be very honest with yourself and your team about what is not working.
Determine to either fix or offload what is not working and to capitalize on what is working well.
- Consider your team members and their roles.
What job functions fit their strengths, and what re-allocations need to be made in order to lessen stress and increase productivity? Did someone excel on a particular assignment last year? Consider giving them more of those types of assignments and shifting their current workload to accommodate.
- What are you doing just because “it’s the way you’ve always done it?”
If the old way works great, by all means, continue; but if not, it may be time to change some methodologies.
- What is no longer profitable in your business?
A good business leader knows when to cut losses in one area in order to gain profitability in another.
Do you have a clear vision and mission statement? Have you communicated it well to your team? Do they know the 1-5 main goals for the year? The old adage, “Begin with the end in mind,” has stood the test of time because it is true. Begin with clarity of vision, mission and goals.
Clarity allows you to create a “Yes List” and a “No List.” It keeps you focused on doing what fits your vision, mission, and goals; and makes it easy to decline the opportunities that do not fit those standards.
The biggest deterrents to goals are distraction, and a cluttered schedule and to-do list. Getting more done is often a matter of actually doing less and focusing on what really matters to you and your company. This focus comes from clarifying your vision, mission, and goals.
Do you have documented systems and processes?
Here’s a dirty little secret that is true of even some of the biggest companies: there is no up-to-date company-wide SOP (Standard Operating Procedure). Creating and maintaining policies and procedures takes time. And, let’s face it, it is not the most enjoyable part of any job. But these are critical to attaining and sustaining success.
Solid policies and procedures will create efficiencies across the organization. From onboarding new employees to manufacturing products to records retention – all areas must be clearly systemized in order to function best. In terms of regulatory compliance, having a system of policies and procedures, and training your team to follow the guidelines could quite literally save your company.
With the right focus, clarity, and systems, production can be maximized. Imagine going into a new product, program, or service launch with these in place.
Clutter – whether physical, mental, or emotional – carries heavy weight. If your team is surrounded by piles of paper on every flat surface, burdened with a to-do list that looks more like a to-do book, and given no clear policies and procedures from which to navigate, they will be stressed. If they are placed in positions that do not fit, the weight of emotional clutter will slow – or even halt – progress.
If you want your team to produce well, organization is key.
- Declutter what is not working.
- Define goals.
- Document policies and procedures.
- Delegate work according to strengths. (Click here for more information on how mapping the strengths of your team creates maximum impact.)
In the busy-ness that accompanies this time of year, take time to reflect on these areas. While you may think you do not have the time to reflect, it may be exactly what you need to do in order to operate more effectively, efficiently, and profitably in your business.
As the CEO of Strength Leader Development, Deb Ingino is a highly sought-after international executive mentor, coach, trainer and speaker. Deb is well versed in global business operations and helps business leaders and their teams to discover and leverage their strengths, so they can create highly collaborative teams that deliver great results. With a refreshingly direct style, Deb helps leaders and their teams to deliver profitable results. Connect with Deb to learn more about her mentorship and coaching programs to equip you with advanced strategies to elevate your results.