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4 Areas Your Business Should Be Focusing On This Year

StrategyDriven Business Performance Assessment Program Article | Business Performance Improvement | 4 Areas Your Business Should Be Focusing On This YearThe reality is that if you try to take on too much at once with your business, this approach may backfire on you. It’s better to focus in on a few essential initiatives than it is to spread yourself too thin and, in turn, end up accomplishing nothing.

There are four areas in particular that your business should highly consider concentrating on this year if you want to experience more success. Take time to review the following ideas and then think about which areas you’re performing well and which ones could use more of your time and attention so that you can come up with a plan of action for moving forward.

1. Customer Satisfaction

Customer satisfaction is one area you definitely want to focus on this year if you’re going to run a better business. It’s important to collect feedback and track your customer service performance, so you know exactly how you’re doing. The happier your customers are, the more likely it is that your business will receive positive reviews online and that consumers will start talking about you with each other and spreading the word about why it’s a wise choice to do business with you.

2. Health & Safety Obligations

Additionally, commit to following health and safety protocol and running a safer business this year. You’ll avoid unwanted situations this way and be able to retain your employees because they’ll feel safe and protected coming to work each day. Properly ventilate and extract dust and waste by using products from Integrated Air Systems to help you achieve this goal. This way, you’ll reduce the risk of equipment breaking down or someone getting sick or hurt because of unsafe working conditions.

3. Employee Retention

Another area your business should be focusing on this year has to do with employee retention. The truth is that people are more willing to change jobs these days if they’re unhappy at their current employer. Keep your employees satisfied and motivated by assigning them challenging tasks and rewarding them fairly for their efforts. Be willing to gather feedback from and listen to your employees so you can create an even more attractive work environment.

4. Innovation

Your business should also be concentrating on how to innovate your products or services in the upcoming year. Going along with business as usual might be the easy answer, but it’s not what’s going to help you stay relevant or get ahead of your competitors. Hold brainstorming sessions with your employees and use your creativity to come up with new solutions that are impressive and newsworthy.

Conclusion

Achieve better results with your business this year when you’re focusing on improving in the right areas. Use these tips to help you set more specific goals about what it is you wish to accomplish and what challenges you need to overcome in the future. Start by coming up with a plan of action and then writing down specific details about how you’ll properly execute each objective.

Common Business Performance Improvement Opportunities

In today’s hyper competitive marketplace, no leader can afford to see his or her organization’s performance remain stagnant or, worse yet, decline. It’s become an imperative as well as a customer expectation that your company’s performance continually improve no matter what business you’re in.

It can be exceedingly difficult for a business leader to pinpoint the performance improvement opportunities enabling his or her organization to achieve its fullest potential.

At StrategyDriven, we’ve had the privilege of helping leading companies around the world improve their performance. Based on this experience, we’ve identified several common performance improvement opportunities associated with the organizational, process, and technology areas that you can look for and implement within your organization to improve overall performance.

Common Business Performance Opportunities explores the organization, process, and technology challenges frequently preventing the achievement of superior business performance.

As illustrated by StrategyDriven’s Information Development Model, business performance assessments belong to the third tier of performance data refinement. Performance reports at this level benefit from human intelligence added to supporting data during: initial data synthesis, basic trend identification and analysis, multi-trend synthesis, and basic model application. It is the infusion of human knowledge and experience at these points that makes these assessments broadly integrated and highly insightful.

To learn how to maximize the value of your business performance assessment efforts:


About the Author

Nathan Ives, StrategyDriven Principal is a StrategyDriven Principal, and Host of the StrategyDriven Podcast. For over twenty years, he has served as trusted advisor to executives and managers at dozens of Fortune 500 and smaller companies in the areas of management effectiveness, organizational development, and process improvement. To read Nathan’s complete biography, click here.

Tips For Improving Your Small Business Using Technology

StrategyDriven Entrepreneurship ArticleThere are many advantages to using more technology solutions in your small business that are worth you learning more about. Now is a good time to work through any fears you have and start to become more open-minded about bringing these types of advancements into your workplace.

Although you may be apprehensive about this transition, keep in mind how much more productive you and your employees will be. There will be less time spent on completing mundane tasks offline and more chances for you to innovate and outperform your competition. Educate yourself on the topic further and then spend time deciding what’s worth you implementing at your office.

A Website & Blog

Improve your small business using technology by launching an attractive website and blog so consumers can learn more about you. The reality is that shoppers want to find out more information about a brand before spending their hard-earned money with a company. A website and blog will give you the chance to present your business appropriately and quickly inform consumers about what makes you unique and better than your competitors. Use your blog to show that you’re the experts in your industry and as a way to provide added value to those interested in working with you.

File Sharing

Another way to enhance productivity and efficiency at your office is to move your tasks online and file share through the Internet. For example, you can use programs such as DropBox for cloud computing so all of your important documents are stored in one place, and any member of your team can access them at any time, wherever they are. No longer do you have to be next to someone to edit their work and waste paper printing off assignments for review. You can move all of your files online to the Internet and then allow your employees to work from their own laptops to complete their assigned projects.

Online Advertising

It’s important to consider working online advertising into your marketing strategy if you want to guarantee you’re reaching your target audience. You have control over the creative aspects and who sees your promotions, so you know your money is being spent wisely when using this tactic. Consumers are spending a lot of time online these days, and it’s a great opportunity for your business to increase brand awareness and boost the visibility of certain products or services. It’s a useful option for helping you to get your small business in front of the right people in a timely manner because you’re the one calling the shots.

Social Media

You should also consider using social media to help you build a stronger fan-base and following and as an additional way to engage with customers. Improve your small business by using social media to ask for feedback, collect user-generated content and run contests. It’s a quick and easy way to make your mark online and instantly get in touch with those who are interested in what you’re selling. Not only do you need to be consistent about posting content but also listen and see what people are saying about your business online. It’s a wise idea to put a team of employees in charge of your social media strategy to make sure you’re constantly present and don’t disappear for weeks at a time.

Ability to Work Remotely

Technology will allow you to offer your staff the ability to work remotely from anywhere in the world. Not only will they be able to work from home and have a more flexible lifestyle, but you too can stay connected to your business while you’re away traveling to see a client or on vacation. You’ll be able to attract top talent when you’re able to offer this benefit at your workplace and will enjoy being able to connect into what’s going on at the office whenever you choose. It’ll be easy to join a video conference or dial into a phone line when you’re away and in need of speaking with someone on your team or a client over important business matters.

Customer Service

Enhance the customer experience for your clients through technology by offering more options for how they can get in touch with you. For example, online chat, email and social media are great alternatives if someone isn’t able to physically walk into your office and get help. It’s still important you train your staff and make sure they know how to handle all types of customer inquiries and complaints regardless of the channel they contact you on. The easier it is for customers to get in touch with you, the more satisfied they’ll be with your service, and more likely that they’ll leave you positive reviews online.

More Communication

There’s no excuse for not communicating promptly when there are so many different technology solutions available to you. Improve your small business by communicating more often using email and your mobile phone. There truly isn’t any reason someone shouldn’t be able to reply to you or that you can’t contact someone back within twenty-four hours. When you move more of your business processes online, you’ll also be able to get in touch with the right people and update or download necessary files within seconds. Take advantage of all the different communication channels that exist to help you do a better job of keeping in touch with clients and managing your employees.

Conclusion

The word technology may sound a bit overwhelming at first, but you should now be able to see for yourself all the ways it can help your business. You’ll quickly be able to improve your operations and client satisfaction scores when you’re willing to adopt new and trending solutions in your office. Avoid worrying about what could go wrong, and try to focus on all the benefits that are possible when you decide to take on a little bit of calculated risk. While technology may not always be the answer, more often than not it’s a wise choice that shouldn’t be overlooked.

Are You Looking for Advice to Improve the Performance of Your Business?

It does not matter what type of business you have, sometimes it starts to feel a bit stale and as though it needs an uplift of some sort. This can often be achieved by better performances from your employees, who may be feeling a bit lackluster from doing the same job every day. They may need motivation to help them improve their techniques, and you may need help to assist you with improving your management skills.

Align Them to a Common Goal

Aligning your staff towards a common goal is vital if your business is to grow and succeed. This process often starts at management level, as if you involve your managers in the strategy, it will soon be passed on to the rest of the staff. The manager’s role includes the task of supervising the employees in their group to ensure that work is finished on time and on budget. This will happen if team members are working together, which has been proved by using this strategy at Rolls Royce.  They have seen improved collaboration, enhancing its reputation for luxury and quality, and a report by the Harvard Business Review showed that 70% of employees were in favor of working this way.

Communicating your vision for the future of your business can have very positive results.

Deal with the Problems

If a member of staff informs you or their manager about a problem, no matter how minor it might seem, it should be dealt with as soon as possible. Do not shrug your shoulders when someone tells you they have lost the My Favorites Toolbar on their computer, go to Myfavoritestoolbar.net and find out how to correct it. This might seem a trivial matter to you but dealing with their minor issues as well as any major ones will make them feel that you value them as a member of your team.

When a member of staff does not feel they are taken for granted, they will work more efficiently and help towards that common goal.

Keep Them Informed of Progress

Once the goals have been set, you should keep your employees informed of the results. Knowing if they are performing well can help them to aim even higher, and if they surpass the level of business that was being aimed for, they will all feel much happier in their work. Also, in letting them know what has been achieved, you are still involving them and that matters where employees are concerned. Keeping staff regularly informed of the progress of the plans, and when changes happen, helps to maintain engagement and make them more productive.

You should listen to their opinions as well. When they are working with your customers, they may well have ideas that you, sitting in your boss’s office, would never have even thought of. Do not fall for the mistake of not realizing just how clever some of your employees are, and what a help they can be to your business if you just listen to what they have to say.

It could be that your product or service needs improving to help your business grow, but first of all, look at how you can improve the performance of your staff, as that could be all that is needed.

Why Data Cloud Storage Improves Business Performance

Technological infrastructure is a real headache for most businesses. Large or small, companies have to be ready for the unexpected, like a hard drive suddenly dying or an employee’s PC repeatedly showing the blue screen of death shortly after every reboot. When systems aren’t functioning right, any kind of strategy goes out the window because when you cannot deliver, your business is toast.

Here are a few reasons why cloud storage supports business performance.

Distributed File Architecture Supporting a Global Workforce

Companies no longer rely on an internal network to provide file access to everyone who needs it. With the increasing use of outside contractors, part-time employees, and home workers that require access to documents, spreadsheets, and other files from the company server, it becomes a real headache for IT departments. For smaller companies that don’t really have an IT department at all, the inconvenience is felt even more.

Using a cloud service designed for businesses that enable anyone with a mobile app or web browser to access the necessary company files, once they’ve passed through two-factor authentication, makes it simpler. There’s no complicated setup necessary because everyone can be given access to the folders they need in the secure cloud. File audit trails and multi-factor authentication protocols ensure that companies can keep track of who’s accessing what and verify that only the approved people can access shared files.

Stay Focused on Core Competencies

Running a proper data center with all the equipment and staff required is expensive and involved. Trying to do so on a small budget or as a small business takes the focus away from providing services to customers and the technology team that is supporting that effort.

Whether looking to place group files on a secure cloud service or purchasing a sales package that works in the cloud, taking advantage of professional companies that already offer excellent data cloud services ensures you get the talent without having to find and hire it. Be sure to compare one cloud service with another, like they do at cloudstoragebuzz.com, to see which one is right for your business.

Scalable Storage as Needed

Growing businesses need ever-increasing amounts of storage. This puts a strain on the existing network and requires adding larger local drives to PCs while ensuring there are enough network drives to handle the storage capacity requirements as they grow. Needless to say, this is one problem that the IT team could well do without.

The beauty of using a cloud service is that they have sufficient storage capacities to allocate increasing storage to businesses on an “as needed” basis. Basic plans sometimes have an unlimited data capacity, but most business plans require additional payment for extra terabytes of storage at affordable rates.

In many ways, cloud storage takes some of the heavy lifting away from IT departments – and people tasked with this responsibility in SMEs – so the company can focus on its core operations. The cost per megabyte or gigabyte is low with so many cloud providers competing, so it just doesn’t make sense to try to handle it all in-house any longer.

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