Are you Loaning too Much Time to Operating your Small Business and Not Enough to Managing it?

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One of the toughest balancing acts within the small business world is the balance that a business owner must strike between managing and expanding their operations and playing their roles in the day to day production of their business. On the one hand,  business owners need to be able to guarantee a quality product for their customers within an acceptable time frame. On the other hand, small business owners need to make sure that their invoices are being paid, that payroll gets met, that they are getting the supplies and raw materials they need to produce, and all the other administrative tasks that go into running an enterprise. If one side of the business is neglected, then the other will suffer, so small business owners can often find themselves caught in a priority tug of war without the hours they need to give every task the time it deserves. It can be difficult to know how to proceed in order to fix this imbalance, and what to prioritize when there is a lot on the line. Nonetheless, it’s part of the role of a manger to identify and fix constraints within an operation. In order to create a strategy that will allow everything to get done, ask yourself the following questions:

What is your biggest strength, and how can you play to it? At a certain point, it’s going to become obvious that you cannot handle everything anymore. At this point, you need to be honest with yourself and identify where your biggest strengths lie. If you are a masterful baker, for example, and are needed in order to ensure that you continue t create a quality product, then consider hiring a manager who is able to take care of the accounting and numerical side of the business while keeping you up to date and involved. On the other hand, if you recognize that your talents are needed to keep steering the business’s growth through identifying quality clients and maintaining business relationships, then you may want to promote an employee you trust to a managerial role on the production side and allow them to progressively take a larger role in that side of the business.

Create the framework of talent that you need in order to succeed. Something that small business owners in growing businesses often struggle with is the relinquishing of control over certain aspects of their operations as their volume of business becomes bigger. For this reason, even when hiring the most basic levels of staff angers should be thinking about their long term potential. The talent within a small business should be able to be trusted to do their jobs by the owner, so that they can spend their time managing the administrative aspects of their business rather than getting bogged down in operation to the detriment of management and growth.


Photo Credit to Jean-louis Zimmermann on Flickr

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