Prioritizing SMB business issues is a must for preventing SMB (small to midsize business) overwhelm. Otherwise, a company’s forward progress is continuously stalled, if not completely derailed.
Although I also work with large organizations, the small and mid-market companies (SMBs) are an important focus of What I Do. Why? Because SMBs form the backbone of the economy and the vast majority of how business “happens.” Helping SMBs leverage collaboration to achieve leadership innovation, employee engagement and customer retention ultimately helps local, regional and national economies.
What’s not to love?
However, the majority of SMBs I work with are so overwhelmed responding to tactical issues that I had to write this blog post. If these scenarios sound like your own SMB, contact me. There is enlightenment, and some solid processes, at the end of your SMB leadership tunnel.
When prioritizing SMB business issues is not a priority, businesses get stuck where they are.
Often, smaller workforces, characteristic of SMBs, create a false sense of security. Leadership and management tend to feel that “all is well,” since they (often literally) can “see” what everyone is doing. However, seeing and believing are no substitutes for implementing business, operational and hiring processes ensuring consistent delivery of high quality output.
Otherwise, the only consistent SMB business processes in place are those creating errors and rework. This scenario indicates a glitch in that SMB’s people-process-leadership matrix.
As a result, employees (and leaders and managers) enter the workplace each day filled with anticipation – and dread. Will the day go well, or not? What issues will spontaneously pop up that will absorb everyone’s time and attention that day? Not only that. The issues “solved” last week? Well, they really weren’t solved at all.
Many little issues, if unprioritized and dismissed as insignificant, eventually lead to huge failures in product and service performance. Failure to connect the process dots becomes systemic and degrades brand, as well.
Over time, as this scenario is repeated and reinforced as the norm, a SMB is overwhelmed by the consequences of their short-sightedness. After all, “things” won’t resolve on their own.
However, just as often, SMB leadership perceives investing in these types of initiatives as contributing to cost rather than profit.
That mindset represents flawed thinking. Empowering and educating SMB workforces – and leadership – ultimately drives customer success and customer retention. And a loyal base of retained customers definitely contributes to profit – if your SMB is doing business with the right customers.
Does your workforce, management and leadership fully understand the implications of issues consistently impeding executing of processes? Has the impact of lack of prioritization of SMB issues contributed to the type of customers content to do business with you, in spite of output issues?
Download my new One Millimeter Mindset™ SMB A-List Client Assessment and determine whether your customer base also is a root cause for SMB issues.
When prioritizing SMB business issues becomes a priority, your business becomes valuable to customers.
In order to make your client base sit up and take notice, take a deep dive into documenting, testing and solidifying consistent processes. While many leaders, managers and employees see this strategic exercise as boring and tactical, other enlightened SMB leaders understand the ROI of this dynamic and strategic initiative.
Which type of SMB leader are you?
Leveraging processes strategically evolves your SMB into a proactive one, rather than a reactive one. Otherwise, customers continue to commoditize your output and hire you based on price rather than quality. What type of customer acquisition and customer retention strategy is that?
Next steps towards prioritizing SMB business issues:
- Read these related posts. Discover how business process Band-Aids are not a replacement for strategy. Instead they keep your SMB in firefighting mode. However, enlightened leadership leverages a workforce that owns customer retention.
- Has what you read today started you thinking about tomorrow? Contact me and let’s discuss.
- Subscribe to my blog. Share your email address in the red box in the right column. Never miss another insightful post.
Babette Ten Haken serves organizations as a corporate catalyst and innovative speaker, strategist, coach and storyteller. Babette’s One Millimeter Mindset™ Workshops and Speaking programs leverage collaboration to catalyze professional innovation, workforce engagement and customer retention, especially in challenging Industrial Internet of Things environments. Babette’s playbook of IIoT team collaboration hacks, Do YOU Mean Business? is available on Amazon. She is a member of SME, ASQ, SHRM and the National Speakers Association.
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