Operations and Processes
Operations and processes are the backbone of any organization. At KistlerGroup we have help numerous companies rebuild or reorganize the operations and establish key business processes to make the organization more efficient and their customers delighted. As companies grow they tend to allow their operations to build out in a haphazard way to meet the crisis of the moment. The organization finds itself in a completely reactive state, lurching from one crisis to the next. As the company grows, the founders or early superstars become what we call supermen. It becomes company lore that only Bill or Charlie or Sarah can fix the really big problems. These people become the gurus and are treated with kid gloves. What many times lurks below the surface is that a lack of operational process has created a chaos culture within the organization. Those that may be help are silenced into submission by the supermen. The supermen create bottlenecks and the organization begins to stall. Products or services don't get delivered on time, or are shoddy, or exhibit some other quality anomaly. Customers become frustrated and angry. Internal squabbling increases and functioning interdepartmental communication disintegrated into finger pointing.
A functional organization has documented processes. It has quality processes in place to check the work of everyone including the supermen. Supermen do make mistakes and sometimes very costly ones. Every organization has the following functions: Sales & Marketing, Accounting & Finance, and Operations. Each of these functions need to have clearly defined processes. The first step is to define, at a high level, what functions comprise your business. Once the functions are identified 3-7 key metrics for each function needs to be articulated as a measurable key metric. The next step is to define the processes that that function will perform to achieve the metric and then the process needs to be written down so it can be shared.
An organization that has established functions and processes will tend to have fewer crises and less of a need for supermen. A great organization keeps their supermen focused on strategic plans while allowing the various functional organizations to manage day-to-day operations, issues resolution, and customer relations. We work with mid-size business to work through this organizational restructuing. As a comany emerges from the other end of this process they are ready for exponential growth with all their people in the right seats to drive the organization forward.