Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Who's the Boss!
One engagement involved a restaurant in which the entire 45 person staff felt they reported directly to the owner. Even the dishwashers' time off requests went to the owner. Obviously, this kept the owner from focusing on the broader and strategic issues facing the business. This design added significantly to the hours he had to work and his family had been unable to take even weekend vacations. We ended up creating kitchen, catering, bar, and service leads to handle daily business issues. We also designed key metrics for those leads to be accountable for business value elements they influenced and the owner and leads met every other week to review trends and discuss process improvements. Profitability went up as the leads managed to their numbers and the owner was able to get some much needed time off.
My second engagement was almost the reverse. It was a five partner veterinarian practice with over 100 employees focusing on the swine industry. I found that conflicting information and guidance was being given as employees approach any of the owners as the "boss at the time of convenience for the employee". I ended up designing a structure with each owner being responsible for a key business function and appoint a key employee as an office manager to manage a lot of the smaller operational tasks. This enabled the owners to focus on their core areas of expertise while providing a cleaner communication and management structure for the employees.
In both of these cases, profitability went up due to better organizational design. Does your team know who to go to? How can I help you to find value in your business?