As more people ditch the stressful nine to five work life in search of more freedom and self-empowerment, they're following in the footsteps of their mentors. If you're one of those people, it's wonderful that you've found your way out of the corporate rat race in pursuit of loftier goals. Now you need some strategies to shift you deeper into success.
If you’re copying everything your mentors do, you may be unaware of some of the strategies they use inside of their business that help them maintain their success. These strategies aren’t glamorous enough to have their own webinar, so in case you have yet to hear about them, here are five often overlooked strategies that will support your long-term success:1. Create your own manuals and support documents
The employee onboarding process can be quite a drag when it’s not crafted intentionally. Most businesses save time by downloading stock versions of employee manuals, only slightly modifying them so it doesn’t look too cookie-cutter.
The information included in your employee manual should cover the basics like your company dress code, schedule policy, and break policy in a way that people can understand. It should also contain expectations and rewards that can be earned through performance but it doesn’t need to be boring. Here’s an insightful guide
for creating an employee handbook that suggests including real stories of how people apply company values, and even having employees create and maintain the handbook, instead of HR.
Creating your own manuals from scratch isn’t a waste of time – it’s actually one of the smartest ways to utilise your time to create a harmonious work environment. A custom manual will also empower your employees to find answers to some common questions that may arise during their tenure.
Your employee manual should be a clear and concise roadmap and resource your employees will save and reference as needed, instead of tossing it in the recycle bin or using it for scrap paper.
When you empower your employees with the necessary resources to answer their own questions, you eliminate the unnecessary back and forth that can eat up your time. 2. Calculate your expenses to the penny
You should know your expenses to the penny. Without knowing your expenses, you can’t know your profits. If you’re selling a product exceptionally well, without knowing how much it costs to produce, you won’t know how changes (like an increase in cost) will affect your bottom line. When you don’t know your actual expenses, your future projections will be incorrect, and you could end up making incorrect business decisions.
Also, by not knowing your exact profits, you can’t set specific, measurable goals for your sales team to meet. You can tell your team they need to sell a specific amount of units, but you won’t be able to calculate your profits, so any goal you give your team will be arbitrary. 3. Create and apply data security measures without exception
4. Be willing to change or scrap what doesn’t work
- Control access to company data. Don’t allow your staff members to connect to Wi-Fi outside of your office. This could prove challenging for staff members who work remotely, but there are other security solutions you can instruct them to implement on public Wi-Fi.
- Ensure email is encrypted. Your staff members will be spending a lot of time sending and receiving emails with sensitive data in them and these communications (and their attachments) need to be encrypted.
There are multiple ways to encrypt emails like point-to-point encryption (TLS), a program called Pretty Good Privacy (PGP), and TLS which is, unfortunately, vulnerable to government spying.
If you don’t understand what encryption is, or how to implement it, here’s a resource guide that explains it and offers a more secure (and user friendly) encryption solution than the aforementioned options.
Being willing to scrap what doesn’t work, or alter what can be changed is one of the ultimate tools for success. Nothing will slow you down in business like being attached to an idea that isn’t working and being unwilling to let it go.5. Create a system for clear communication
The most successful businesses are the ones that have employees who regularly communicate effectively with each other, their superiors, and their customers. If you want a team that communicates well, you need a system that sets expectations for transparency and honesty no matter what.
The most effective communication takes place without blame or making someone wrong, and it always holds the intended solution in mind. When you establish this style of communication with your staff, you open the door for integrity and authenticity in all that they do. In turn, this drives success for your business.