If you take a few steps back from your newly budding start-up business, you might begin to see the business as more than just a bunch of stuff that needs to come together to make money. Really, your start-up is a project. Think of how many components are being thrown in to the mix to make your business become a systematized reality. You’ve got your founders, employees, developers, partnerships and JV’s, lawyers, accountants, etc., all running around doing their tasks. What strategies are you using to control the chaos?
You must face reality and begin your role as a project manager. Your business must become a well-oiled machine that can plow through a mapped process. Would you ever think of getting on a plane that has no flight-plan, no destination, no gauges or controls? Why on earth would you attempt to start a business without a detailed plan, set of distinct goals, and the right people to take the charge? You wouldn’t do something like that, you’re too smart. You realize that bumps in the road are inevitable. You know that sometimes roads are shut down for repair, and you are forced to take an alternate route.
Most breakdowns inside of a business are due to flawed process and flow. If you don’t have a set system in place to handle the little things, how will you handle, and react, to a real threat to your business? My first piece of advice is to pick up some process mapping software (don’t be afraid to click the link, it’s not affiliate) at iGrafx or you can google it. Begin systematizing your daily tasks, and charting your projects. A quick list of reasons you will want to use this type of software (or if you’re nuts do it by hand):
- You will achieve optimum productivity and proficiency.
- A visual breakdown can make it easier to gain perspective.
- It will enable you to benchmark performance.
- Completed project maps and systems can aide in creating and updating your business plan.
If you are involved in a start-up, make sure that you are organized, planned, and prepared. This is just one more tool to make it all easier, so you can work harder with less effort. A goal of any business should be to maximize efficiency and output.
Do you use any form of process mapping at your business? If so, how well is it working for you?