Amex Open for Small Business and the New York Times are hosting a Small Business Summit Conference in New York. I will panel moderate for the discussion “You Are Your People” in the morning and the “Financial Bootcamp” discussion in the afternoon.
Here are five tips you can’t miss from Rieva Lesonsky who will be on the morning panel.
She is President and Founder of GrowBiz Media, a content and consulting company specializing in covering small businesses and entrepreneurship.
Here are five small business tips she offered to small businesses trying to get the best from their employees and sub contractors;
Small Business Tip #1- Provide Accountability. Whether someone is working with you on a full time, part time or project basis, accountability is crucial. This is not the same as micro managing. Give someone a straightforward task and see how they do. Check in with them periodically.
How are they coming along? Did they hit any snags? How is the output shaping up? Do they have any suggestions on how to do it better?
Allow the person to do it “their way”. You’ll be surprised at the creativity that gets unleashed and the pride that person will feel in the outcome.
Small Business Tip #2-Manage risk. In manufacturing, if you find a problem in the early stages of production, it costs pennies to fix it. If you wait until the product (or service) is completed and then you find the problem, it can bankrupt the small business to fix it.
If you’re working on a big project, verify that milestones are being reached along the way. Multifaceted web design projects are a good example that need continual feedback to avoid cost overruns. You’ll end up with a product that works harder for the business.
Small Business Tip #3-Celebrating small victories. Don’t wait for the big payoff to recognize talent and effort. I’ve used this strategy to turn around businesses that were failing miserably. This one small business tip can do so much to boost morale and employee engagement.
Small Business Tip #4-Don’t ignore your high performers! Isn’t it always true that the problem performers suck more time and energy out of you? High performers need recognition especially since small business success is resting on their shoulders and yours. Send low performers packing fast. Recognize high performers sooner. You’ll be more profitable in the long run.
Small Business Tip #5-Learn how to delegate even if it is your “baby”. Easier said than done, no? If you want to keep your sanity, you must do this. Delegate wisely. Test to see someone is capable of handling the responsibilities you’ve given them by narrowing project scope so you won’t go bankrupt if the outcome is awful. Always dialogue with someone before you send them off to get the job done.
Do they have suggestions on how it should be done? Do they see any challenges to completing the job? Do they need any information or support to ensure a good outcome? Ask the questions. You’ll drive down costs and drive up profits with the result.
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