Chaos in Your Business Starts and Stops With You
By Drue Lawlor, FASID
Director of Coaching, Gail Doby Coaching & Consulting
Are you working in the midst of chaos? ! If you want to grow your business, “have a life”, and truly be viewed as a professional, you need to address and eliminate the chaos. There could be a variety of reasons for the chaos in your business but it truly does start – and can stop – with you! Which of the following 8 “chaos causes” apply to you, and when do you plan to address them?
Probably the reason many of you are working in the midst of chaos is that you’re wearing too many hats. We’ve addressed previously the advantages of having a team – even if you start with a part time bookkeeper and part time assistant. Less chaos leads to more efficiency, which affects the bottom line.
Another reason for chaos may be because you don’t know how to grow your business – there is no plan or strategy for growth.
Particularly for extroverts, you need to know when to disengage. You may tend to talk more than necessary as well as needing time to recharge. Otherwise you may end up on overload and that can cause chaos for those around you.
Attach a monetary value to your time. This is one of the most important habits to establish in your business and to instill in every member of your team. It will help you eliminate turmoil and run a more professional and efficient business.
When presenting to a client, plan carefully – don’t just “wing it”. A lack of preparation usually will lead to you being too wordy and to wasted time which shows a lack of professionalism. So decide in advance what your take home message will be and prepare carefully.
Know when it’s time to stop researching and to take action. Don’t let “analysis paralysis” take over – remember that time is money. Again, your team needs to follow this same path. Remember we talked about attaching a monetary value to your time – and your team needs to remember this also. If more time is spent researching than had been estimated when setting the fee, you are losing money!
Set an agenda for each phone call and teach your team to do the same. Write down the key items to be discussed and then end the call with a quick review of what action items were decided. Also be prepared with what message you will leave if you reach voicemail. This simple procedure of planning ahead will save time and lead to a more organized process.
Lack of processes and procedures is probably the greatest cause for chaos. Establishing processes and procedures in your business will help you create the backbone for growing your business and for retaining happy team members. And, in the long run, if you have them in place when it comes time to sell your business, your firm will hold much more value than simply a client list.