by Harry Welby-Cooke, Pieter Scholtz

Cross your t's

Looking after the bottom line

Looking after your business
Pieter Scholtz and Harry Welby-Cooke
The three most important areas of business are time, teams and finance.  Here are the top 15 business coaching tips for business owners.
 
TIME:
1.    Unless you want to be a slave to your business, create a default diary. There are nine hats of business: Human resources, Finance, Operations, Sales, Marketing, Administration, IT & Systems, Personal Development and Strategic Planning. All of these areas need to be in your default diary accordingly on either a daily, weekly, monthly or quarterly basis. This must be strictly adhered to and all other appointments can then be fitted around these default entries.  This way, all areas of your business receive your attention, chunked up into manageable portions. 
 
2.    Daily planning is essential.  Analyse which lower level tasks you can delegate to your staff each day.  You can free up more time by adhering to a time quadrant of urgent, important, can wait and delegate. 
 
3.    Measure your achievements over a week to find out what you actually spend your time on and then get rid of time wasting areas that are not generating income.
 
4.    Emails can be extremely time wasting. Unsubscribe to unnecessary newsletters and distracting emails. Set clear time aside each day to read and answer emails instead of stopping what you are doing to answer them each time they arrive.
 
5.    Adhere to pre-set meeting times.  If the meeting is set for one hour, don’t let it run over to two hours. 
 
TEAMS
6.    Develop an organogram that represents what the company will look like with the end game in mind.  To begin with, most of the blocks in the nine areas of business will be blank or have your name in them until the company grows and each position is filled. Clearly define the roles and responsibilities of each position with no overlap.
 
7.    Recruit people with greater specialty knowledge than you and continue to train, train, train all staff. 
 
8.    Develop a clear mission and vision strategy that has the right people in the right seat on the right bus facing the same direction.
 
9.    Delegate to your team.  Understand the difference between abdication and delegation.
 
10. Manage with clear key performance indicators.  Know the numbers that have to be reached? Over communicate about the progress of the business towards its goals.
 
FINANCE
11.    Fully understand your product margins and profitability.
 
12.    Make sure your financial reporting is always up-to-date with forecasted numbers and budgets versus actual.
 
13.    Maintain a steady cash flow by instituting a stringent debtors’ collection policy.
 
14.    Have a clear, unique selling proposition (USP) otherwise you will compete only on price which will reduce your profitability.
 
15.    Test and measure everything.
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