Imagine Knowing…the possibilities are endless Strategies for organizational success

23Oct/170

A systems approach to viewing your business

How do you evaluate the current status of your organization?  If this is being done only in pieces, e.g., "we need to increase sales;" or "reduce expense x;" then perhaps a more systematic approach would be beneficial.   A systems approach lets you see how multiple components need to work together to the improve overall condition of the company.

For example, "we need to increase sales."  What are some steps you might take to get the bigger picture?

  1. What do the sales people say?  Are they happy?  Do they make an adequate income/benefits on their incentive plan?  Do they work too hard, or not hard enough?  Do they have ideas on improving the product/service, customer experience, or advertising methods?  Do their opinions and suggestions count?
  2. What is the market for your product/service like?  Is it a crowded field where you have to fight for each sale?  Is the product/service a dying one or on the leading edge?  What new ways can you develop your product/service to offer more customer quality and value?
  3. Are you dependent on one big customer or vendor? If so, what happens if they are gone?  How prepared are you for a disaster?  Where will the customers go if you are not operating?  What happens if employees can't work for some reason?
  4. How is employee morale?  Are employees generally happy working in your company, or do you have a high turnover and/or see bad attitudes?    What is the "company face" that your customers see?  Do you support, train, and educate your staff?
  5. What is your financial picture?  Is the organization stable and profitable, or on the edge of failure?  Do you have resources to grow and try new pathways?  Is financial stress affecting morale and productivity?

Review the entire organization to document a baseline for planning purposes.  Do your SWOT analysis for each part of your organization to look for problems.  It can take only one faulty part to throw a system off, and the one you think is the problem may not actually be the problem.  Imagine knowing.

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