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Cut The Administrative Crap

It’s the first week of January as I write this so let me ask you a question. When you look around at what you’re spending time on and more importantly what your employees are spending time on, how much of this time is invested in activities that will grow your business this year and how much of the time is spent on administrative crap?

Sorry for being blunt here, but hear me out. Despite what your accountants, customers and even shareholders might request of you, there is no amount of crossing Ts and dotting Is that will support business growth.

Business growth results from increasing your value, more specifically the value of your products or services, to the marketplace. That’s right, increased value equates to increased growth.

In my book Operational Empowerment I discuss a concept I call “The Value Connection”. The concept is something I often help clients discover in their business in order to ramp up their growth trajectory. In the simplest of forms, the value connection is the degree to which employees understand and operate in order to add value to customers.

I share the example of Dave Carroll who witnessed his $3500 Taylor guitar being tossed around like a rag doll by United Airlines employees during a stop over. Although luggage damage is not a new concept for those of us who travel frequently, Dave’s story is unique because despite his continued attempts to obtain assistance from various United Airlines employees (including executives) to resolve the issue, his requests went unheard. As a result, Dave went on to record a YouTube video about the event that as of today has somewhere north of 14 million views. How’s that for brand management?

So, I want to return to my comment earlier on. Administrative “busy-work” although seemingly necessary should take a backseat to activities that add value. Are your employees clear on how they do or can add value to your customers?

Here are a few ideas to consider:

  • Are your employees empowered to quickly deal with customer concerns or do they have to escalate everything?
  • Do your employees recognize that their attitude, personality and demeanor can have a direct impact on your company’s brand?
  • Have you made an attempt to help each and everyone of your employees connect their role with bringing value (directly or indirectly) to your customers?

As the old saying goes, value is in the eye of the beholder. Does everyone on your team recognize what your customers value? Do you?

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