Something to always keep on the top of your mind is what your company needs, not what you need. They are most likely different and will vary heavily.
It’s a slightly different way of thinking, but makes a huge difference.
If you’re a small business, you most likely have some form of an organizational chart. Unfortunately, they aren’t very useful.
If you haven’t ran into problems with yours yet – you will soon.
It’s vital that every single person in your company knows who is accountable for what. If there’s a problem with the coffee maker, a customer service problem, or profit came in for the week 7% under goal, you don’t want people guessing who owns the problem.
Or what’s even worse – you own the problem because you never made anyone accountable.
And that’s why an organizational chart doesn’t help.
In comes the “Company Flow“.
For now, this will be a quick overview. I am in the process of writing a book that will go much more in depth on this subject. Please e-mail or reach out to me with any questions – I’ll be glad to answer!
To start, disregard every single employee, including yourself.
Now, what does your company need?
Some things will be true for all companies – such as sales, finance, HR. Some things will change – inventory, marketing, security.
You know what your company needs. Don’t write down any wants.
This is “what does your company need to survive?“
Write down everything you can think of.
Come back when you’re finished.
OK great, now start putting them into categories.
Generally, all functions of a company will fall into 1 of these 5 categories:
– Responsible for company strategic direction, large scale ideas and problem solving, holds the important relationships, creates the company vision and culture, the “creator”
– Responsible for running the company by holding everyone accountable and ensuring company vision, culture, and projects are carried out to completion.
Sales / Marketing
– Responsible for bringing in new sales/revenue to the company. Most likely to affect revenue dollars.
Operations / Delivery
– Responsible for ensuring customers get the product. Most likely to affect both profit percentage and dollars.
Support / Admin
– Responsible for freeing up time from the other categories to increase revenue and profit.
Then think about how much time each of these groups will take to do the bare necessities.
If it’s 40 hours/week – great – leave that box alone.
If it’s less than 40 hours/week – we’ll end up with 1 employee in multiple boxes.
If it’s more than 40 hours/week – you need to break up the position a bit more to make it manageable.
Next, really look at the skillset and personality type required for each of these positions you have created.
As an example, do you currently have an extroverted people person that thrives on teamwork, working as a programmer in solitude for most of the day?
You need to play to peoples’ strengths, so moving them around to positions better suited for them will completely change both their productivity and engagement.
Now that you have a “Company Flow”, you should have a much better idea on:
1) Who you need to hire and/or move around
2) When you need to hire(and fire)
3) The required salary cost to run your organization
4) How to keep your employees much more engaged by putting them in a position to thrive.
Company Flow, not an Organizational Chart