Apr 10, 2020
As we can see from the latest happenings with the coronavirus pandemic, many businesses are in panic mode, with a few experiencing severe disruptions in their supply chains. Nevertheless, even whilst on lockdown, to assist with the sustainability and success of your business, you need to continually improve your skills to avoid falling victim to poor management.
More importantly, proper planning is the primary step to good management to prevent the unforeseen. This is why the consistent monitoring of your business strategy, cash flow, sales, and marketing is vital. So, if you are looking to curb the poor management processes currently present in your business, this article offers a few preventive measures.
1. Establish time-management skills
Running a business is not a task for the faint-hearted; this is especially true for personnel management, which can be extremely time-consuming; besides, hours and days easily slip by when you are managing people. For this reason, working on improving your time management skills is vital. You will then find it easier to apply those imbibed skills to your business. No doubt, one of the keys to success is learning how to manage time effectively and applying the same to both your professional and personal life.
2. Be efficient at managing cash flow
You can never fall victim to poor management once you are efficient in managing cash flow. Funding is what keeps a business afloat, and when the funds are not flowing consistently, the business stands the risk of shrinking and eventually dies. To be able to cope with daily expenses, money must be coming in, and you can't just fold your hands, believing that today will replicate tomorrow. Thus, as an entrepreneur you must arm yourself with a cash flow forecast; this way, you'll be pre-informed on what comes in and goes out daily.
Don't be discouraged by the fact that it is a mere forecast, as it offers business owners an insight into their financial future. This forecast simply projects expected sales and expenses, giving you a clear picture of the amount you will likely have left in the bank. Cash flow can also be efficiently managed by timely dispatching of invoices, early payment of bills, collecting deposits payment ahead of time, and following up with clients that have fallen behind with their payments.
3. The skill of small talk needs to be perfected
To be a good manager, you need to have impeccable interpersonal and communication skills. What’s more, you should imbibe the habit of meeting people and initiating small talk. Your employees are equally important to the business; thus, they should not be ignored. When interviewed, people will always say they love to work with a boss that is approachable and easy to relate with as a whole, and this is an established fact. Altogether, being liked by your colleagues and clients speaks volumes about your management skills.
4. Your emotional intelligence is important, develop it
Now, we define emotional intelligence as the ability to understand and perceive other people’s emotions and act accordingly. This skill is essential for managers, as it allows them to pick up on employees needs, become self-aware, as well as develop enduring business relationships. What’s more, you can also work on enhancing your emotional intelligence by evaluating your strong points and weaknesses, imbibing the habit of listening, and also creating a strategy for personal development.
5. Learn continuously
Be on the constant look-out for opportunities to take on new skills that will help you develop yourself as you grow. It is recommended that you break out of your comfort zone to learn about other aspects of the business you engage in. Most especially the ones that are bound to be complementary to your present role. For instance, someone who has an interest in marketing should also learn about sales.
Best believe you will also benefit from management-focused conferences and workshops. Doing this will ensure that you are prepared for any task ahead. And when you have full comprehension of the principles of management and leadership, you will be better equipped to recognise as well as absorb whatever life throws at you.
6. Network online
You might not believe it, but when you network outside your usual business hours, you are boosting your knowledge and also boosting your contact base. Networking could be the one thing standing between you and the exposure to new leads. It further gives you a platform to mingle on platforms such as LinkedIn, with other businesses that will positively impact your business .
7. Leadership by example
employees lookup to business owners for direction and cues on the best way to conduct themselves. As the owner of a business, your decisions should be ethic-based. In fact, you should equally keep a close watch on people occupying leadership positions in the firm to follow similar values. Nobody is a sacred cow and as such, credibility with employees must be maintained. So, if a top dog is caught violating company policies, he or she must be brought to book immediately.
8. Reinforce penalty for unethical conduct
This goes hand in hand with the aforementioned point. You see, employees must be held accountable for any action that is considered unethical, no matter their status. Even new staff should not be spared, as such, they shouldn't be allowed to do anything hands-on until after they are well informed. Further, refer to your code of conduct to warn or sack when a staff member exhibits unethical behaviour.
9. Create company checks and balances
It is not ideal for a single staff to manage related tasks. Opportunities for disreputable behaviour should be controlled by developing a system that allows for checks and balances. For instance, the person that will collate customer purchases will be different from the one that will balance the books, ensuring that all payments are received and acknowledged or documented. What’s more, an annual audit is necessary to verify that employees are following established procedures, and you should create new policies for addressing unique situations that may arise with time.
10. Hire for values
When recruiting new staff, it's not odd to target people with experience and academic qualifications, since it shows the employee’s competence. However, you should strive to avoid unethical behaviour right from the employment stage. Do this by observing each candidate’s values to ensure that they mesh with the culture of the company.
Before hiring, equally, ensure that the new staff believes in the vision of your organisation as well as earning their pay through hard work. Once this is settled, they will surely be set to comply with the policies of your organisation.
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