Every owner manager has to find ways to improve how work is done and at the same time look for ways to improve the employee and customer experience but they often make the same common mistakes. Successful businesses understand that happy customers and employees have a direct impact on the bottom line.
Since most owner managers take on many roles they are prone to make mistakes, which can threaten the business’ long-term survival. Here are 10 of the most common mistakes we have put together.
- Unclear Purpose and No Plan
Every owner manger of a business needs to understand the reason for a business’ existence, which is the basis for most business decision making. There is an old saying, “if you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” Every business (large or small) needs a plan, so a business owner must devote time, at least once a year, to review the strategy and goals of the business to ensure it is moving in the planned direction.
- No Written or Shared Goals
Goals are how businesses achieve objectives; the business should develop the goals by writing them down and assigning accountability to someone for achieving them. Without taking these steps, it’s difficult to achieve objectives.
- No Budget
It’s not uncommon for organisations to operate without a budget; often the owner does not create a budget because of the time investment in the process. There are many successful organisations that don’t operate with a budget, but businesses that do have budgets can allocate money to those things that will ultimately improve and grow the business.
- No Employee Accountability
Owner managers who fail to hold employees accountable for job responsibilities and goal achievement are guilty of mismanaging these key resources. Employees who are paid wages without meeting job responsibilities are providing poor value to that organisation
- Not Anticipating Market Changes
The market changes quickly in every industry making it important to keep an eye on shifting trends in areas such as technology or customer requirements, and tracking these changes.
- Not Understanding Customers
Customers pay the bills, and therefore large and small businesses need to take the time to learn how customers use their products and services and to create systems and processes to meet those needs. Many businesses develop products or services based on what they think the customer wants – BUT it is vitally important to learn about the real customer experience – by simply asking them. Customer expectations are a moving target so keeping a finger on the pulse of changing needs is critical to maintaining and growing a solid customer base.
- Not Considering Employees (and Partners) the Most Important Customers
Employees are the business’ eyes, hands and feet and are usually the first contact customers have with the business. Employees need to have clear job expectations and the training to perform job responsibilities. Also they need to be monitored for completing job tasks and rewarded for doing a good job. Happy employees have a direct impact on a positive customer experience.
- Lack of Communication
Poor communication is a problem in most organisations. Successful businesses create processes to manage how information is shared with both employees and customers, using face to face and other communications approaches. This creates a business environment that employees enjoy and customers are attracted to.
- Not Always Looking for Ways to Improve
Continuous improvement is must for businesses to develop and enhance products and services by constantly looking for ways to improve how and what they do. The owner manager should always review the internal processes of developing and delivering products and services in an effort to identify improvement opportunities.
- Not Celebrating Successes
Celebrating success along the way helps to build strong teams and strengthen employee engagement. Forgetting to recognise this success diminishes the people involved and reduces the importance of success.
If anything in this blog strikes a nerve or resonates with your own experience, feel free to make a comment below or call Phil on 07720 397040 or email him or fill in the form below