First-time entrepreneurs and business builders tend to be big-picture people. They envision the future of their companies, the missions they will strive to uphold, the revenue targets they may someday reach. However, a failure to attend to the smaller details - like tracking your technology purchases or creating policies for how employees fulfill their responsibilities - can hamper your firm's maturation and development into an organization that clients and competitors take seriously.
Fixed assets management
In the early days of building your business, money flows in and out at an alarming rate. No sooner do you secure a new client, and that additional capital has gone to pay for a new batch of computers. Tracking these physical investments and accounting for them at the end of your fiscal year may seem like a waste of time when there are calls to make and interviews to conduct. Yet this shortsightedness can hurt a company financially. Small expenses from office materials to software and even bigger purchases, such as a company car or heavy equipment, should be carefully tracked.
Many startup companies run into the problem of managing long-time employees. Without a clear set of rules and expectations at the outset, the team members who were the first to join the company may balk at policies that are implemented later as the firm gains legitimacy and expands its employee base. This can create management issues in the future, making it difficult to convince otherwise-valuable team members to comply with rules you enact to build standardized processes and give structure to the organization.
Processes for welcoming clients
The processes you establish for interacting with clients can significantly impact their opinions of your company, regardless of your performance. Small touches - such as following up with a client after setting a meeting date and then checking in before the call or meeting to share an agenda, or offering water and coffee/tea to office visitors - will resonate with a prospect or client much longer than the most recent status report you shared with them. Focus on the client experience at the start of building your business, and it will become part of the overall culture.
How do you ensure the small details of running daily operations are left to the side? Have you explained to everyone in the organization why they are so important?
The start of the new year can bring new opportunities to set the right systems and processes in place to keep you organized and to align your objectives with your operation.