You’re a startup entrepreneur – are you ready to manage people and processes for productivity too?

Congratulations! You’ve got your startup up and running. Now, probably more quickly than you thought, you’re heading towards capacity (after all there are only so many hours available to you in the day).

So you’re thinking maybe now is the time to grow the team, and that means it’s time to expand your job description to manager as well. But before you do, how do you do it in a way that looks after the business, the investors (or your bank balance if you’re the one funding your startup) to make sure that your startup won’t burn through your cash before it becomes sustainably profitable?

You need to think 3C’s – communication, consistency and collaboration.

Communication

While you might think you’re ready to jump in and hire your first employee, you’ve got to do the prep work first. This means firstly knowing where you’re heading (i.e. your business’ mission, vision and goals) so that you can hire the right people and secondly, communicating that to your employees effectively (once you have them).

1. Key to attracting top talent according to Facebook CEO, Mark Zuckerberg is “just being upfront about what you stand for”. Communicating your business values, mission and goals is vital in attracting and employing, like-minded people who will be genuinely excited to jump on board and help you achieve the business’ goals. In a startup, it is not only essential to be looking for someone with a varied skill set, but someone who can be a great contributor to the team.

2. Are you impeding progress in your small business by changing goals, being indecisive or holding up resources? The key is in more effective and consistent communication.

Communicating with your employees regularly is essential to business productivity – how else would anyone know the direction they should be heading? Keep team members informed of the latest updates and don’t forget to encourage them to keep you advised of their progress.

A Harvard Business Review study of 600 managers ranking the impact of clear goals (among other things) on employee motivation, found that on 76% of those managers’ best days, making progress was a significant influencer. But to have progress, the teams need to be aware of the goals they are working towards.

Consistency

In a productive workplace, everyone needs to be focused on getting results. Communication is important for a productive workplace, but actually doing the work is the key to achieving results.

Your business’ productivity can be severely impacted when mistakes are made, and even more so when they aren’t picked up on or worse still, continually repeated.

It’s all about consistency of approach. First, check that the processes you have in place not only work, but also are as effective as possible and then consider which processes you could automate. Why not use software to help? Automating as many everyday processes as you can will allow for greater productivity in your business.

For example, if you produce quotes regularly, you might try out a simple document automation tool such as Quote Roller so that you can create sales documents or quotes without the need to re-duplicate work. According to Quote Roller, you could boost your team’s productivity by 35%! Or, maybe consider freeing up time by ditching the data entry associated with your receipts by letting Shoeboxed do it for you?

Collaboration

It is important to surround yourself with people who inspire you. After all great companies are made when the whole is greater than the sum of its parts (Aristotle was, after all, talking about business when he said it, wasn’t he?). Therefore, surrounding yourself with the right people allows you to benefit from fresh ideas, diverse insights and an overarching synergistic approach to business.

The HBR study also found that managers noted collaboration as the key-contributing factor, making it the second greatest influencer of a positive, efficient workplace.

Collaboration is about creating a productive working environment for your employees. Providing your team of employees with an environment where they can work in synergy, share knowledge and ideas creatively and work together towards common goals, will allow your business to benefit from better problem solving, more effective work efforts and greater efficiency and productivity in the long-term.

At Shoeboxed, every day starts with a team huddle where everyone shares what they achieved yesterday, what they’ll achieve today and any roadblocks they think they might encounter. That way, the group can help solve roadblocks before they even start!

If you’d like to make your workplace even more efficient and productive, why not go paperless? Ditch the data entry involved in some of your every day processes – let us look after for you! You can give us a call on 1300 00 1333 or you can get started now with 30 days free.

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[…] Above all, having a team that can work together productively and effectively is one of the best ways to build a working environment. You might also like to have a read of a blog on managing your team with communication, consistency and collaboration. […]

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