In celebration of National Small Business Week May 4-8, we’ll be bringing you some of our favorite tips for starting or building your own business. #DreamSmallBiz
Earlier today, we talked about the importance of having a business plan. There’s another aspect of business planning that I wanted to cover, that isn’t necessarily a core component of your “official” business plan, but it’s even more important to the day-to-day operations of your business.
I’m talking about planning and documenting your business processes, aka business systems, business procedures, etc.
If you are like most businesses owners, you’ve experienced overwhelm in your business at one time or another. Maybe you experience it regularly and for good reason. Hundreds of things are pulling at you at one time. You’ve got marketing going, production to oversee, calls to return, employees that need your advice.
It’s never-ending, right? How do you possibly handle it all?
Most of the small business owners we work with keep almost all of these things in their head. I ask them where their business plan is. It’s in their head. I ask where their employee training manual is. It’s in their head. I ask where their tech specs are. It’s in their head. About the only thing that’s written down is their calendar of appointments. Even a lot of their to-dos are in their head.
Here’s one simple and powerful way to get out of overwhelm: Write it all down.
Your overwhelm is in your head because most of how you run your business is in your head. Start writing it down, and you will start having less overwhelm.
Take a little time each day to document your business processes.
Make a list today of the processes that you haven’t yet recorded. Cover marketing, production, technology, training, accounting, etc.
Then take one of these areas and document it in detail this week. Each week for the next few weeks, document another area. Within a fairly short period of time, you should have at least the basics of marketing procedures, production procedures, technical specifications, client follow-up procedures, and employee training procedures in place.
In other words, you’ve now got business processes. Processes that you can rely on. Processes you don’t have to think about. Processes that you will use to grow your business without all that overwhelm, now that it’s not all stuck inside your head.
At Specialized Computing Innovations, we can help create and document your technical systems and processes.
We can also create your website, intranet, or shared files repository so that you can share your newly codified policies and procedures with all interested parties — clients, employees, contractors, etc.
And we can set up a collaboration system so that your clients, employees and contractors can contribute to the documentation process — creating more complete systems and procedures, and removing even more of the weight from your shoulders.
Learn more about Small Business Week at https://www.sba.gov/nsbw