Join us - Friday 29 September 2023

The Business Improvement Summit


Featuring 'Blog From the Dog


Detach yourself from your business!

As a small business owner, do you find the business running you as opposed to you running it? That feeling of owning a job rather than a business!

Are you feeling the strain of spending too much time working when all you want (and some would say, need) is some downtime - whether that’s devoting more time to your family, catching up with friends or picking up that pastime you always promised yourself.

We totally understand that balancing business responsibilities with important downtime can be challenging, but there are certain things you can do which may help and we’re here to support you too!

Use these series of blogs as a steer towards getting your business on track and you being more in control.

Start to think of your business functionally, not personally

This can be a challenge as all small business owners are part and parcel of the very fabric of their business.  But starting to think about your business in a more detached manner can be insightful and, oddly, liberating.

It is a bit of a strange one, but we suggest you start by drawing up a functional organisation chart for your business - which usually results in a business owner saying ‘what do I need an organisation chart for, I do this and he does that’.

But think functions, not people. 

All businesses have five main functions that sit beneath the business owner and need ‘running’ regardless of the size of business:

  • Sales

  • Marketing

  • People

  • Operations

  • Finance

And underneath each of these, there is a plethora of functions that need fulfilling whether there is one person in the business or 20.

Let’s look at sales for example

Are you devoting enough time to the function of the Business Development Manager in bringing in new work when you’re really busy? If not, when you get to the end of the current work (which sits under operations by the way) you’ll have little or no new business.

Is the function of the Strategic Account Director, your main account management role, even though half your customers would only be assigned a more junior Account Manager in a much larger organisation?

We’re not suggesting that you go out and recruit a Business Development Manager, Strategic Account Director and an Account Manager, just realise that the function exists, even if the person doesn’t.

This way you may identify that you are providing a level of customer care and service to some clients that far outweighs their value and importance to your business (because they shout loudest?). They are getting the Strategic Account Director when they are only worth the Account Manager.

More importantly, is there a customer who should be getting the love and attention of a Strategic Account Director but is only getting an Account Manager type service? And if so, when was that customer last spoken to by the Business Development Manager?

Your name may be in every box, but think functionally, not personally.

[Top Tip: This also helps guide recruitment as you hire people to fill functions, not simply because you’re rushed off your feet!]