I visited with a client this morning and we discussed how to grow a business and how not to let your business run you. Part of the challenge small businesses face is how to “let go” of certain day-to-day elements of the business. In order to grow, you must transfer the day-to-day details from your plate to others. This leads to all kinds of interesting problems — finding the right “others” to transfer duties to and ensuring processes are in place so that training is simple. I counsel all clients to put processes in place early when they aren’t too busy. Processes keep you sane when you do get busy and make bringing on new people much less time intensive. I spoke with another attorney recently who has a temporary employee. The attorney said, “This person is working out pretty well — plus I don’t have time to train someone new.” Procedures ease this challenge and make it easier to train a new person if necessary. Getting things off your plate requires organization and management — procedures give you both to enable you to work “on” your business with confidence that the stuff “in” your business is running smoothly.
This has also come up personally as I head out on vacation — it takes a lot of time to ensure everything is taken care of while you’re gone — especially when you need to leave the business at home so as to come back from vacation refreshed and ready for action.