Have you ever thought about how a business is similar to a living, breathing organism?

Just like any organism, a business has many interconnected parts that must all function well together for the whole entity to survive and grow. The different departments, processes, systems, and people all make up the organization. When one part isn’t working well, it creates problems that ripple throughout the entire organization, which can lead to the demise of your organization.

I used to approach the way I worked with clients only through leadership and management development, but my approached changed when the problems my clients encountered similar problems over and over again (as they say, the proof is in the pudding).

It became clear that it often wasn’t ONLY a leadership or management problem. A process and systems problem. An organizational structure problem. It was a lack of sales training and inventory management. It was (fill in the blank).

There are so many intricate parts of a business, much like our own bodies, that one kink in the system can lead to a bigger mistake, and that mistake can cost the organization (or you) a lot of money.

A lot of times, business owners think they just need more sales when really, they need to plug the hole in the bucket so they can increase profit (but I digress).

Story time…

I was having a conversation with a potential client a few weeks ago. The organization has been around for 3 years, was at $350k in revenue, and had 10 employees. The business owner was so upset and I quickly learned why.

The company grew so rapidly without a plan, they did not have the structure in place to handle the growth, and they were in debt (revenue means nothing, profit means everything).

They had no idea who they were as a company and why they existed.

They had no goals.

No organization structure.

They had no job descriptions.

The business owner didn’t know how to lead or manage the team (which is why one disgruntled employee got the rest of them to quit).

They didn’t price their product correctly.

They didn’t have a financial plan (I don’t do this part but always connect my clients to a CPA who acts as a financial business advisor).

Had sales but then were not able to fulfill those sales because they had no structure and no staff.

You can’t bring customers//clients into a broken system, because it leads to bad reviews.

You can’t bring team members into a broken system, because it turns good team members into bad employees.

This person came to be when the pain was so bad, they had to do something. If they had contacted me 6 months prior to this, this individual would not have been in this position. 

This is often what we do in our lives, we don’t take action until the pain is so bad we can’t ignore it anymore. It is like we would rather have the pain pill than take the vitamin, to cover up the pain rather than being proactive.

Good systems, good structure, clarity of processes and roles, and knowing how to both lead and manage are essential for any organizations success.

Check In On Your Business…

I’d encourage you to check in on your business.

Often, we are too close to the problem and don’t see what the issue is or we choose to ignore it. If there are parts of your organization that aren’t running smooth, odds are it is affecting other parts of the organization, which means you are losing out on profit, as everything is interconnected.

When you don’t know how your organization is doing, if you know you have roadblocks but can’t figure out what steps to take to move your business forward, and you want an outside perspective, reply to this email and let’s connect.

If you find you are feeling overwhelmed in your role as a leader or business owner, and need to gain clarity and a path forward, scheduling a Clarity Call may be your next best step. Sign up here.

Stephanie German is a business strategist, adjunct professor, and speaker. She holds a master’s degree in organizational leadership and loves giving back to her community in a variety of ways. When she’s not coaching clients or writing about leadership, Stephanie is usually headed to the mountains or the beach with her family, drinking savory wine, or working on the latest project with her husband. Stephanie’s greatest desires are to raise up the next generation of leaders while raising her own children to be strong, independent, and brave. She lives in Fresno, California with her husband Blake and her three spunky daughters, Cara, Kinsey, and Peyton. She is the best-selling author of So Your Boss Can’t Lead?

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