5 ½ Ways To Stop Wasting What You Have 

Oct 10, 2023 | Blogs

For business owners who are committed to growing aggressively, in an economy that may make you fear your chances, the number 1 step to take is to ensure that you’re not wasting what you have: 

  • Your time 
  • Your team’s time and strengths 
  • Your operational resources – processes, systems, efficiencies 

Waste will cost you – both in the moment and in terms of opportunities to scale. 

So we’re here to help you become as efficient and successful as possible. 

The goal? Aggressive growth AND you as the owner or CEO, being able to step back, take a holiday and actually relax while it all still gets done. 

 

Here’s how – in 5 ½ ways: 

  1. Take an honest account of what you have. 

This starts by asking yourself questions: 

  • How much time resource do I have within my team? 
  • Where are my team’s strengths? 
  • Where are my team’s weaknesses? 
  • How am I using strengths in one area or one person to fill in the weaknesses elsewhere? 
  • Do I have a balance within my team or is everyone of a very similar profile?  
  • Where are the gaps? What am I missing?  

Take yourself out of the day to day, in a novel environment to do this review. Take notes and step back. 

Now you know where your gaps are and what strengths you have available to leverage.  

2. Make difficult decisions fast 

One of the biggest similarities between successful business owners and leaders is the ability to make decisions fast. Not every decision has to be perfect, but they do have to be timely and fully implemented. 

Depending on your wiring, this will either be as easy as breathing for you or really challenging. 

If it’s easy, skip this bit, you’ve got this. 

If it’s hard, here’s how to make this easier: 

  • Practice with the little things. In your personal life and in business. Choose your coffee order faster. Pick a book in half the time. Choose your internet provider by looking at only 3 options. Forgive yourself the need to have every single bit of information or to consider every option. 
  • Practice imperfection. It’s okay for your decisions to not always be the right one. The fact that you made a decision needs to be celebrated. You committed and moved through. Then you were presented with an opportunity to make another decision. 7/10 is the new 10/10.  
  • Share with your team that you’re celebrating decision making. Richard Branson says ‘If you trust your people to make their own decisions, they will reward you. 

3. Prioritise processes 

If you’re committed to aggressive growth and scaling, you can’t do it without processes. It’s that simple. Rely on tribal knowledge to your peril.  

Here’s how: 

  • Agree on a timeframe to get 90% of what you’re doing across the business documented. Depending on your size, this can take up to a year. 
  • Communicate this across the business, clearly and multiple times. 
  • It’s not 100% because documenting processes will never be complete, there will always be edits needed and new processes discovered.  
  • Share clear templates for how to document a process and what’s expected. 
  • Nominate someone to be in charge of that project (someone like us) 
  • Set up clear accountabilities for who is in charge of which department’s processes. 
  • Follow through and implement. 

4. Take data really seriously 

Data isn’t just something that you have to give to the accountant or that the IT team love. It’s something that should be being driven across every single thing your business does. Why? To give you control. 

Control is not a bad thing. You need it to enable you to aggressively grow. 

How do you do this? 

  • Set up simple and effective scorecards, both for the business as a whole and for each team and function. They should capture metrics that you know, once achieved, will create your success.  
  • Communicate with your team how important data is and prepare to train them on this (we can help you here). 
  • Give everyone one metric to be in charge of. Share with them the excitement you have for this and the power it gives them. 
  • Ask them what do they need to ensure they hit this target? 
  • Deliver on what they ask. 

 

5. Set clear expectations  

The number one reason for perceived failure on a task or project is the failure to set clear expectations from the start. 

As fast-moving, big-thinking people, it’s so easy for us to think that we have shared what success looks like and what we expect, but so often, our team members may not have truly understood what we meant.  

If this isn’t understood, how can someone deliver? 

Failure to set clear expectations guarantees everyone will be disappointed. 

Here’s how to make sure this doesn’t happen: 

  • Get clear on what your expectations are before you talk to anyone else? What exactly do you expect? What will success look like? This must be very very clear to you. 
  • Ask yourself who is best to deliver on this? It may not be the first person who comes to you. 
  • Share with them what you’re looking to achieve and ask their feedback – what do they think? How do they feel about this? What would they need to make sure this is successful?  
  • Set clear objectives and KPIs. Decide on the numbers, both for actions and results and share them. Get the accountable team member’s buy in and ensure you both fully understand what is about to move.  

 

½ Ask yourself how you can equip your people for success. 

This is key to point 5… 

The most fundamental question for any leader is: 

What do you need from me? 

As leaders, our responsibility is to equip our people with what they need to deliver on the expectations we have set. 

Prepare to ask this question every week and respond to what is asked for.  

Not only will this enable your people to feel supported, it will enable you to be in control of the trajectory of the project and what may be required as it evolves to ensure its success.  

 

Implement these 5 ½ tips to enable you and your team to utilise every resource you have and grow and conquer your market.  

If you need help along the way and someone to drive and own these strategies within your business, reach out to us at hey@blackandbluebusiness.co.uk. We’re here for you.