In business it pays to be getting the most from your resources, time and knowledge. Working more efficiently, with clearer communication and a less wasteful use of your business’ resources may be the difference between winning or losing a contract and therefore making a profit or a loss. There is a huge amount of good practise being carried out in organisations across the globe but it can be hard for business professionals to easily identify smarter ways of working that are readily implemented in their field of work. By following these suggested tips and ideas it is possible that you could identify a range of ways that you, and your business, could work smarter and increase your earning potential and job satisfaction.
Be a good communicator
One of the main reasons businesses and individuals are ineffective and inefficient is because communication is poor. If staff, customers or suppliers are unclear about your requirements, what you need delivered and when, there is a big opportunity for problems to occur. Many issues in the workplace which delay production or disrupt project delivery are due to misunderstanding and miscommunication. Be clear with all your communications, internal and external, what it is you want to achieve and when you want to deliver it by.
It is incredibly important to start off on a good foundation. Set out the priorities for your organisation and continue to communicate them regularly to everyone you interact with. If everyone knows what is at the core of your business proposition they will know what your priorities are and be better able to deliver their contribution to them. When problems occur, be clear from the start about how you propose to resolve them and be open about them. The only way to ensure lasting good communications within business is to build trust and that only comes from an open and transparent approach to dealing with people.
Learn from the best
There are many ways to benefit from other organisation’s experience and learn from proven smarter ways of working. Networking within your own field or industry provides a great way of picking up on the latest success stories and their business approach. There are many blogs, books and trade journals which highlight success stories and innovation in business. Think about the businesses you know and admire then contact them directly and ask about their processes, communication methods and business philosophy. Most business leaders are happy to share their experiences and thoughts on ways to work smarter so do not be afraid to ask. One of the best, simplest and quickest ways to identify ways of working smarter is to talk to your employees, clients and other direct contacts. They will be able to give you feedback and ideas. Many of those people will have worked with other similar organisations which may have given them ideas for how things could be improved. Listening is the key to learning and improving, so be prepared to listen to many people and their ideas.
Use technology wisely
Technology is not a panacea for modern, smarter, working practice. Many companies have lost valuable time and money implementing costly IT systems which were intended to make processes quicker and more efficient but actually resulted in confusion and delay. Ensure the technology you use is fit for purpose and is not going to direct staff time and energy away from the core business activities you need to focus on. There are many benefits to using IT and new media solutions but they must work for you and not result in your business resources becoming tied up in unproductive activity.