Missed deadlines, lost customers, overwhelmed and overworked employees, long nights working with little to show for them… Hopefully, this doesn’t describe your company. But, it could if you aren’t careful in building and improving processes to support your growth. All companies reach a point where what worked before just isn’t working anymore, and the secret to maintaining your sanity, your best people, and your profit margin as you grow is to anticipate and get ahead of these challenges before they take a toll.
We’ve identified a few signs that a company is healthy from a process standpoint:
Continuous Process Improvement: Predictable results require predictable process. Unless you have identified, documented and continuously improve the key processes critical to the success of your company, it will not be possible to consistently deliver expected results as you grow. It is common practice for manufacturing companies to use lean methods to eliminate waste and consistently improve how they operate, but this mindset is necessary for growing companies in any industry.
Strong Planning and Communication Process: Everyone in the company needs to know what the company is trying to accomplish every quarter. Your people are coming to work every day and doing something. You need to ensure you have a system in place to know that they are working on the right things to move your company forward. Without a process for planning and communication, your company will not be aligned and you will waste precious time and resources.
Weekly Review of Critical Metrics: Even the strongest quarterly plans will go off track at some point over a 13 week period. It’s crucial to have a process of reviewing the critical KPIs and Priorities weekly with your team so you can make the necessary adjustments and avoid missing your targets. Having a system in place with visible dashboards to trigger the right discussions at the right times can prevent you from being blindsided by missed results at the end of the quarter.
Financial Discipline: Nothing puts a bigger strain on cash than growth. You must continue to pay your bills while investing in the strategies necessary to grow. Not having a consistent rhythm of reviewing financial data and processes can put your company’s future at risk.
To see how your company is managing critical processes, assess your overall company health (not just as it relates to processes), and to gain access to helpful resources, take our Company Health Check.
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