A Workforce Multiplier

A company’s executive leadership teams historically focus their attention and resources on improving financial performance … tangible “hard-side” results. There is an almost endless list of quantifiable measures captured on spreadsheets, tracking individual and team performance. Here are some.

Revenue Profit Margins Client Growth
Market Share Units Sold Cost of Marketing
Cost of Sales Production Costs … and many more

“Soft-Side” components are mostly cultural intangibles, which are harder to quantify. Here are just a few.

Leadership Committed to Innovation and Excellence

Employee Buy-in to Company Vision and Mission

Engaged Employees (Empowered to Adapt)

Organizational Transparency and Accountability

While a company’s culture is sometimes seen as a low priority—as far less than a pressing requirement—it really isn’t. A positive company culture—fully supported by the entire leadership team—can be a powerful force inside a company, empowering its employees to accomplish so much more.

Think of a positive company culture as a workforce multiplier.

Empirical evidence supports that statement. Harvard Business School a few years ago, in a 11-year study of a variety of businesses with either positive or negative cultural attributes, concluded that:

Positive business cultures averaged 682% growth.

Negative business cultures averaged 166% growth.

The difference is striking. Investing in and supporting the development of a positive company culture … literally drives more growth.

Even if organizational performance measures are consistently meeting established business goals and objectives, strengthening company culture can dramatically improve those measures even more. Big change doesn’t happen overnight, but small changes can quickly establish new directions.

What cultural changes are most needed in your business?

Facing New Challenges

Business owners fill many roles – as CEO or President – and as visionary, leader, and cheerleader. You make the big decisions, determine market strategies and tactical direction, the WHAT, WHO, HOW and WHERE of your business, and more.

As a business owner, you must do whatever it takes.

In most instances, you recognized a market need and worked day and night and most weekends … to launch your company and see growth in revenue and profitability. There were times of jubilation and moments when you questioned everything. Yet, you persevered and are enjoying more success. Challenges still exist and competition is a constant pressure, but now you are not alone. You have a team.

But you want more. Your original vision has grown as you have also grown as a business owner … with all the hats you still wear. Maybe business growth is flat of late. Maybe you see a new market opportunity. Or, maybe you need to transition the ownership of your business to a daughter or son, someone on the management team, or an outside entity. New challenges to face and overcome. You have big decisions to make.

As you assess your company’s financial and available expertise, and your bandwidth and that of your management team, there might be another maybe – you realize a need for outside experiences and expertise to  navigate the new challenges. So, how do you find the right expertise, the right set of experiences to provide the requisite guidance?

Ask your colleagues for referrals, and as you meet with candidates to discern their fit and competencies, be clear with them as to your present resources and challenges, and be absolutely clear on what you want to achieve. There are always details. Nail them down. Make the call. Trust your instincts and work to support their efforts on you behalf. Success will follow.

Predictive Awareness

All businesses strive to improve financial performance and track actual and forecasted metrics. Let’s consider revenue and profitability.

Depending upon business size and complexity, executives may evaluate  daily, weekly, or monthly. All want to see positive numbers across all measures, but may see shortfalls, too. Yet, the underlying reasons for “bad numbers” are frequently not understood.

Identify key metrics, then establish Predictive Awareness Systems to monitor.  Minimally cover the leading-edge indicators of sales, customer service and quality control. Pay attention to key individuals and departments. Survey customer purchasing habits and complaints. Foretell negative trends to quickly understand the “why” behind performance shortfalls. Reinforce positive trends.

Back to revenue and profitability – all processes and employees contribute to these metrics. An early warning sign might be seen in an individual’s work activity, often first seen in the sales department.

Let’s focus on selling. Are you tracking predictive activities (“the pipeline”) for developing customers – such as networking through association or other events? Are sales managers evaluating AND coaching their team to identify poor customer building habits – to improve those behaviors? Are you offering training to improve core capabilities?

These are vital for every business to be successful.

Is your new business on-boarded through a process that synchronizes and supports both Sales and Operations? Are customers thrilled with every point of contact? Are new customers likely to become proactive advocates of your business?

Be aware of early warning signs. Minimize performance and financial gaps … or even eliminate them. Improve Predictive Awareness Systems to improve business outcomes. GAPWORX can help.