Monday, August 16, 2010

Keeping The Pulse

Understanding and knowing what is happening within a business and an organisation requires more than a report a month.  A single sided A4 piece of paper with some bullet points is not the best way to measure the life force of your business.  Here are a few better ways (in no particular order) -
  1. Talk to people - daily.  Keyboards and KPI's are great but I prefer to speak to the person on the floor.  The people on the floor usually will tell it to you straight and while they may not be able to join all the dots and create a full picture they will tell what is and isn't working very quickly.
  2. Tell others what you know.  One improvement I have instituted is the weekly newsletter.  It is a one page pdf that summarises what everyone is up to for the week.  This is as much a tool for me to know what is happening and much as it is a tool for everyone else to understand what is happening in on a much larger scale.
  3. Read the reports.  Written reports will always be the backbone of a management system.  However I think written reports should be short, sharp, to the point and engage in further action.  Written words should create a sense of urgency or the need for action.
  4. Keep it real.  If people and employees know they are being listened to, the more forthcoming they will be with their honest opinions in the future.  Those opinions can be the key markers of the health of the organisation at any given time.
"All lasting business is built on friendship. "  Alfred A. Montapert

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