What’s New! Business Therapy
Last week in our “What’s New!” installment we introduced you to Nate Sandys, our resident operations consultant. This post is a chance to dig a little deeper into what that means for small business and why it can be a money saving investment. An Operations Consultant is a therapist for your business.
Large vs. Small
Larger corporations have a built-in structure with heads of departments as experts. Having this team of varying knowledge bases and viewpoints helps bring new solutions and ideas to the table. Bill in Operations suggests that Jean in IT write a program to automate the TPS reports. Now your crew in accounting is free to crunch numbers instead of filling out redundant paperwork. No one had ever questioned the TPS reports before Bill. Filling out the reports by hand had always worked, so that is what was always done. It took a new perspective and the right question.
Now, the leader of a small business does not have the benefit of a network of experts. There are no Bills or Jeans to broaden his or her scope of knowledge or expertise. These leaders carry the weight of their business and while they have their arms wrapped around it, they are too close to see potential issues. No one person can do it all and see everything.
It is also likely that someone who opens a small business is not an expert on how to run a business. More often it is an expert in a product or service. For example, a mechanic is an invaluable part of the service industry, but probably not a small business expert. Mike the Mechanic should bring in Nate to run some diagnostics on his shop.
Nate is going to ask Mike the Mechanic all the right and necessary questions. He will want to see every step and process. How does the quoting system work? How are employees scheduled? What program is used for billing? Are parts ordered on a schedule? How is invoicing done? Is the support staff doing redundant work? Could this be automated? Nate and Mike will then discuss where issues are and Nate may suggest solutions or improvements to help his business. Nate can help implement these fixes or changes, or he can make the suggestions and Mike can take it from there.
Data Data Data
Small businesses often overlook or do not understand how to use their data. Do we even have data? What good is this information to us? The data is right where you left it, and Nate will find it. Nate will then show you what you didn’t know you had. Ways to know when to start production to get the product out faster. Reduce wasteful ordering by showing you consumer trends from years past. The information is there. You just need someone who knows what he is looking for.
Help Me Help You
An Operations Consultant is a therapist for your business, and maybe tangentially for its people. Nate may not help you get over your fear of clowns, but he will ask the right questions. He will offer solutions. He will help ease the burden on overstressed links in the chain. For the price of a business seminar, Nate will focus and care about your business and its specific needs. He is as eager to learn as he is to help. It is money well spent for someone this dedicated to success.
Are you enjoying our What’s New! series? Check out last month’s post about Nate.