A “Fresh Take” on Business
Do you remember what it was like when you first entered the work force? Do you remember how scary it was? Depending on how long you’ve been finished with your education, it may be a little harder to remember. I’ve been thinking a lot about that turning point in my life lately. As I recall, my first few weeks out of college were a roller coaster. Why? Because business does not work as perfectly as college made it seem.
Interacting with our clients over the past month, I tried to remember what my professors had taught me. What processes have these clients conquered through technology that would be system flaws that would shock my younger self? I took note of the ones that stood out the most to me:
- System Integration. The amount of time (and patience) that is wasted on getting info from one piece of software to another, be it by manual data entry or slow processes, is astounding. The good news is that integration is possible AND a phenomenal cost cutter. All it takes is someone with the know-how, experience, and creativity.
- Accountability. The amount of room that a dishonest worker has to mess around with in a disjointed system is far too much. With finely-tuned systems, things are automatically processed in a way that it becomes obvious when an employee is taking advantage of the system. The data doesn’t lie if you know how to collect and observe the data. Which brings me to my next point…
- Reporting. Many companies are operating at a loss on certain items, simply because they do not have the means to find these things out. Reporting is flexible, customizable, and key to knowing the health of your business. Far too many are going without the powerful benefits that they can leverage from the data they already own.
While not a comprehensive list, these were clear to me as I looked from “fresh eyes”. In college, the scenarios my professors presented to us were simpler (and FAR too perfect) compared to how things actually work.
Join me for a minute and picture yourself in your business as if it were your first week on the force:
- How jarring would your transition from a utopic vision of business to the reality of how your business functions?
- Do you have disfunctional standard operating procedures that include unnecessary or overly complicated steps?
- Where are you spending too much money on wasted labor that could be automated?
- Who are you going to ask to help you with these problems?
- How much could you save in inventory, personnel, or other plannable costs by utilizing your existing information better?