Tips to keep your business lean

As a business owner you want your company to grow at a good pace – rather than a lumbering one – and this means you want to ensure your business is lean and profitable. At its core, being lean is about having what you need, and getting rid of what you don’t. We look at a few lean principles to help your business expand.

OPTIMISING WORKFLOW

You may think you know how work is getting done, but in reality, the process is very different. With the pressure to get work done, employees don’t often think about the process, they’re rather focused on simply completing the task at hand. Look at how work is done and remove those steps that don’t add value. What you want is to create a more efficient workflow process.

TRACK PROGRESS

In order to know if something is working or not – you need evidence. It’s important to track the numbers and collect relevant data, as this will give you a clear idea of where your operation is running smoothly, and where the speed bumps are. If you’ve installed a new process, don’t simply assume that it is more effective, gather the evidence to see if there is an improvement.

TIME IS MONEY

Having meetings is an essential part of running a business, however these sessions can quickly eat into valuable, productive working time. During your meetings, limit the time each person can speak, and reign in colleagues who chat off topic. As a bonus, shorter meetings will keep all employees engaged and listening to the discussion. It’s imperative that you show your staff that every minute of the day is important.

HIRE THE RIGHT PEOPLE

One of the quickest ways you’ll drain your resources is through bad hiring decisions. You don’t want to be in a position where you’ve hired too many staff members, or the wrong ones. Take your time and only employ someone when it’s necessary. Follow a rigorous employment process and hire the right person the first time around.

MANAGING YOUR BUDGET

Part of being lean is being able to efficiently handle your finances. Monitor and manage every Rand and think hard about what you’re spending it on. Reduce unnecessary expenses and you’ll improve your cash flow. It’s your responsibility to be smart about how you spend your money.

Running a lean business is a never-ending process, and it requires constant examination. When you get rid of inefficiencies, you have a company that is lean and fit, and it encourages growth and expansion.

LEAP provides the right support infrastructure to entrepreneurs and business owners, so you can focus on strategically developing and growing your business. For professional advice call us today on 011 449 7074 or visit www.leapco.co.za.

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