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The Big Picture of Business – Each Role Matters. The Value of Support Staff

StrategyDriven Big Picture of Business ArticleEvery person in the company matters to its success. Every job is important, as is filling them with the best people for each job. The art and skill of being great support staff is a cornerstone of business success.

From pop culture, think of the great role models that we grew up watching:

Della Street was the loyal secretary to Perry Mason. She knew what everyone was thinking and was the glue to the cases. She was the model for executive assistants and office managers everywhere.

The CEO is made stronger with a good C-suite team. Ed McMahon was TV’s premier second banana. He worked as assistant, announcer, commercial pitchman and sketch narrator to Johnny Carson throughout their 29-year run on NBC-TV’s “Tonight Show.” They had previously worked together on a game show, “Who Do You Trust” on ABC-TV. Bandleaders on the late-night are vital #3 characters on the show, including Doc Severinsen, Skitch Henderson, Paul Shaffer and The Roots band.

The movie star heroes had buddies to help them navigate the adventures. John Wayne and Roy Rogers had Gabby Hayes. Gene Autry had Pat Buttram.

TV show stars had great support casts. Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz had Vivian Vance and William Frawley as Ethel & Fred Mertz. This historic teaming became the formula for most other TV sitcoms. Shows like “The Mary Tyler Moore Show,” “30 Rock,” “The Office” and others had expanded ensemble casts.

Some performers made careers as supporting players. Ann B. Davis was Schultzy on “The Bob Cummings Show” and Alice on “The Brady Bunch.”

Back characters on TV shows included restaurant and bar operators, where the stars went top relax. There were friendly, familiar places such as Cheers bar, Arnold’s Drive-In on “Happy Days,” the Krusty Krab on “SpongeBob Square Pants,” Dale’s Diner on “The Roy Rogers Show” and other homey places. In the business world are those staff people who make us feel more like family. Therefore, our loyalty to the company rises, and we are more productive.

Still other back characters bring cohesion to the enterprise. On “Gilligan’s Island,” those glue-adhesive characters were the Professor Roy Hinkley and Mary Ann Summers. Those vital employees in the business world might include the IT guy, the receptionist, the mailroom manager, the ethics adviser and the secretary to the Board of Directors.

Great executives know the value of crediting support figures for the business success. Lt. Columbo was always quoting his wife as basis for testing hypotheses, though the character was never shown. Newspaper publisher Perry White was always upstaged by his employees, notably Clark Kent/Superman. Al Roker does the weather on “The Today Show,” and he is also the motivating segment host as well. Nobody turns letters like Vanna White, making her essential to the legacy of “Wheel of Fortune.”

And then there were those mentors behind the scene who were responsible for lots of creativity. The Beatles had George Martin as their producer. Steven Spielberg had John Williams as music composer for his films.

A host of people make the CEO look good. Further, they transform the company to greater plateaus. Warmly recognize the contributions of executive assistants, trusted advisers, mentors, support staff, hier apparents, adjuncts, vendors and outside stakeholders.

Here are some characteristics of support personnel and rising stars who will make it as professionals and business leaders:

  • Act as though they will one day be management.
  • Think as a manager, not as a worker.
  • Learn and do the things it will take to assume management responsibility.
  • Be mentored by others.
  • Act as a mentor to still others.
  • Don’t expect status overnight.
  • Measure their output and expect to be measured as a profit center to the company.
  • Learn to pace and be in the chosen career for the long-run.
  • Don’t expect that someone else will be the rescuer or enable you to cut corners in the path toward artificial success.
  • Learn from failures, reframing them as opportunities.
  • Learn to expect, predict, understand and relish success.
  • Behave as a gracious winner.
  • Acquire visionary perception.
  • Study and utilize marketing and business development techniques.
  • Contribute to the bottom line, directly and indirectly.
  • Offer value-added service.
  • Never stop paying dues and see this continuum as “continuous quality improvement.”
  • Study and comprehend the subtleties of life.
  • Never stop learning, growing and doing. In short, never stop!

About the Author

Hank MoorePower Stars to Light the Business Flame, by Hank Moore, encompasses a full-scope business perspective, invaluable for the corporate and small business markets. It is a compendium book, containing quotes and extrapolations into business culture, arranged in 76 business categories.

Hank’s latest book functions as a ‘PDR of business,’ a view of Big Picture strategies, methodologies and recommendations. This is a creative way of re-treading old knowledge to enable executives to master change rather than feel as they’re victims of it.

Power Stars to Light the Business Flame is now out in all three e-book formats: iTunes, Kindle, and Nook.

How To Take Risks In Business

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business ArticleThere are many skills required of a person when they run a business. They need to be able to cope with lots of different situations and turn them around into successes for the business if possible. They also need to be able to manage people, deal with finances, organize marketing, and much more. Something that you might not have thought about before, but that is certainly an important trait when it comes to business, is risk-taking. There needs to be an element of risk-taking in any business if it is going to grow and thrive successfully. If you’re concerned that you aren’t taking enough risks (or perhaps even taking too many), read on to discover just how to do it right.

Search For Solutions

Risks in business should always be calculated ones. This means that you have looked at the situation you might be heading for and determined what the negative outcomes might be. Although you might not like to think in these terms, it is crucial – pretending that things won’t go wrong is a sure way to have problems because if something untoward does happen, you won’t know how to deal with it.

That’s the key; you need to know the potential negative outcomes because you need to know how to combat them if they do arise. Search for solutions for each issue that you might come across, and if they do occur you can deal with them. If they don’t, then you have nothing to worry about.

Think Long-Term

Having an idea that is a possible risk is one thing, but being able to continue once that idea has been implemented, whether the results are good or bad, is another. You need to not only think of the idea and weigh up the risks, but you need to think of the long-term for your business as well. Ask yourself what will happen if the risk you are taking does pay off, and what will happen if it doesn’t. This is important because you don’t want to take the first step and then not know where to go after that. A long-term plan is much easier to deal with broken down into smaller parts – it is also less risky.

Be Adaptable

Even if you do have a plan in place, you need to be able to adapt (and adapt the plan) if anything changes. Trying to continue with your original idea when you really should go in another direction won’t help you and won’t help the business. This is no longer a calculated risk but is instead a stubborn refusal to see that change needs to happen. This will hurt the business, and those being asked to carry out the tasks on your behalf could become extremely stressed by the situation, knowing it the wrong thing to do but unsure how to deal with it. A stressed employee might need time off; they might even need help from the Law Office of Scott D. DeSalvo.

Test First

You might be tempted to launch your new idea straight away because you’re so excited about it and you’re sure that it will do well. However, this is not a calculated risk – this is just a risk, and that’s not a good thing. Wait until you have all the facts and details you need to be able to launch successfully; launching a product and not having the right marketing in place, or not being sure how good that product, service, or idea really is, can be damaging to your business.

Getting Started with Small Business Protection

Safety is paramount to the success of your business, which is why larger companies dedicate entire departments to protective measures. Small business owners don’t always have that luxury, leaving them to handle unique risks without a massive amount of protective resources. That creates a real challenge, one that can often lead to digital, physical, and even legal issues most are unprepared to handle.

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article
 
So, what can you do? Before leaving your failsafes and security protocols to the wind, check out these tips to help make protection a top priority at your small business. From simple office rules to management tools, here’s the ultimate safety strategy.

Get Rid of Personal Devices

Step one to your plan of action should be eliminating personal or bring-your-own devices in the workplace. This reduces the risk of weak links in your security plan, helping to keep the lid tight on your operations.

While this isn’t always possible, there are workarounds to achieve the same result. Instead of removing these devices from your place of business, adopt a universal security package for your employees. The usefulness of managing and auditing your entire IT infrastructure’s user access rights with a tool like SolarWinds can’t be understated.

Malware Matters

As tight as security may be on your employee end, the world of the web is a malicious place. Malware protection is a vital safeguard for your business, manning the front lines while data enters and leaves your servers. It’s still important to train employees on security and safety measures, but this set-it-and-forget-it protection is something you can’t do without.

Unique Passwords

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article
 
While this 90’s rhetoric shouldn’t need restated in 2018, the number of hacks from even seemingly airtight corporations in the past few years suggests that it hasn’t set in just yet. With a single data breach costing upwards of $1 million on average, this is one area of security you literally can’t afford to overlook.

Ensuring every member of your staff uses a strong password is crucial these days. Have them keep the word used unique, add numbers, and make sure they utilize symbols if possible for the best results. Also, it helps to have your employees change their password every six months to a year.

Physical Security

It isn’t something most business owners want to think about, but individuals within your operation can be just as dangerous as those on the outside. While it is important to trust your employees, it never hurts to utilize cameras and locks when possible. Plus, these tools are an excellent means of theft prevention.

Backup Your Data

From contracts to daily sales, today’s businesses record almost everything online. Technical malfunctions happen at the most inconvenient times, which is why backing up your data is essential. Instead of opting for pricey equipment, consider cloud storage as a frugal yet secure alternative. There are numerous cloud storage services available that can help you create “hard” copies of important information.

Insurance

Even if you’re in the earliest stages of operation, business insurance can save you an enormous headache. Depending on what your business entails, you may need varying types of insurance. Public liability, home business, and indemnity are a few popular examples. Regardless of which kind your business needs, protecting yourself in the event of a worst-case scenario is vital.
Other small business insurance needs include:

  • General liability
  • Professional liability
  • Errors and omissions
  • Owners policy
  • Workers compensation
  • Property
  • Home-based
  • Product liability
  • Vehicle
  • And business interruption

Physical Protection

No, not bodyguards. Physical protection and security come in a wide variety of forms. Each of which is equally as important as the digital ones you’ve set in place. A simple example would be ensuring that your brand is unique to avoid any litigation or legal ramifications.

Another example would be the use of physical documents for contracts and agreements. Aside from creating a professional look, it further protects agreements made between you, your employees, and your clients with a hard copy. Adding arbitration clauses to those contracts is another physical security measure that can prevent legal ramifications down the road.

StrategyDriven Managing Your Business Article
 
Finally, physical protection for a small business can be as simple as creating a safe work environment. Working to prevent accidents and encouraging non-discrimination as well as non-harassment policies might not be the first thing on your mind when the word protection comes to mind, but they are just as important as cyber security measures.

Protecting Your Business

Security isn’t something to take lightly in any business venture, but you don’t have to shell out your earnings on an entire department just to make sure your organization is protected. By following the tips and advice above, you can keep every aspect of your small business from digital to physical secure while keeping things affordable.

Marathon Consulting Group, Inc. Listed as a StrategyDriven Trusted Services Partner

StrategyDriven Trusted Service PartnerStrategyDriven is proud to introduce Marathon Consulting Group as our newest Trusted Services Partner!

Having completed our rigorous certification process, we found Marathon Consulting Group to be a market leading service provider with proven client results.

Troubled organizations going through a regulatory recovery typically have longstanding performance issues driven by a number of factors. Recoveries led by Marathon have resulted in improved regulatory margin, equipment reliability, organizational alignment and safety culture, as well as 18% reduction in production costs and 60% fewer consequential events achieved within 1-2 years and sustained performance at that level.

Marathon Consulting Group provides services in the following areas:

  • Monitoring: Business Performance Assessment Program, Corrective Action Program, Management Observation Program
  • Management: Risk Management, Standards & Expectations
  • Values: Corporate Cultures

About Marathon Consulting Group

Led by richly experienced leaders and executives from the power industry, Marathon Consulting Group approaches regulatory recovery and other engineering, technology, and management challenges from a strategic and 100% solutions-focused perspective.

Learn more about Marathon Consulting Group at: marathoninc.com

About StrategyDriven

StrategyDriven provides executives and managers with the planning and execution advice, tools, and practices needed to create greater organizational alignment and accountability for the achievement of superior bottom line results. At StrategyDriven, our seasoned business leader experts deliver real-world strategic business planning and tactical execution best practice advice – a blending of workplace experience with sound research and academic principles – to tens of thousands of business leaders worldwide.

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Protecting Your Most Valuable Assets

StrategyDriven Risk Management Article
 
As a property owner, you would like to be able to predict every scenario that could happen to your home, business, vehicles, and other assets. However, accidents and disasters happen when you least expect them. You have to be prepared at all times to respond to the worst.

Along with repairing and maintaining your home, car, and other property, you also may want to cover them with policies that will pay out if or when an accident or disaster occurs. By investing in home, business, and auto insurance palm coast fl, property owners like you can always be protected against devastating financial losses.

Getting a Free Quote

Before you invest in a new policy for any asset, you want to know how much it will cost you. You do not want to spend a lot of money each term on premiums that are outside of your budget. You would ideally like the premiums to be realistic for what you can afford and what you know you can budget for ahead of time.

When visiting an insurance broker’s website, you should be able to ask for and receive a free quote for any kind of insurance policy the company sells. The premium quote will be based on different factors like your age, state of residence, gender, and driving history. It will also take into account whether or not you are a first-time insurance buyer or someone who has had insurance in the past.

Once you get a free quote for the policy, you can decide if you want to buy the policy or continue shopping around for better rates. Note that the rates presented on the broker’s website are likely designed to be for the least expensive policy. You may find the bargain you want or need to continue your search.

Insuring your car and other property is important as the owner. You want to know you will recoup your losses after a disaster or accident. You do not have to guess what your premiums might be before you purchase the insurance. You can get a free quote and more information by using insurance brokers’ websites today.