How questions come to small business owners daily. Jack Mencini and Adam Sonnhalter of Maximum Value Partners www.maximumvp.com and cohosts of Dirty Secrets of Small Business have been through thousands of them. They have been coaching together for over 15 years and one of the How Questions that they address today is – “How do I document how we do stuff here?”
To start the discussion, Jack interjects that one way to look at documenting your business process is to create a functional organizational chart to see who is doing what. The other key charts to develop are 4 flow charts to analyze your business cycles.
These are -The Revenue Cycle, The Purchasing Cycle, The Payroll Cycle and The Production Cycle.
For the Revenue Cycle, the phone rings or there are customer inquiries. Start by drawing little boxes with the titles: Orders Received. Look to describe how the orders are documented, the flow and description of the orders into the system and into the accounting system. The same can be said for Purchasing with the question to be asked: Is there an authorized request for that?
You will have the visuals with the boxes and the start of how the process starts and generates within your small business.
The Payroll Cycle includes your team on your payroll and the 1099 contractors or advisors and those people you want to hire. The fourth cycle is Production. All businesses produce products or services and this is typically the part of the business the owner knows and loves best. These cycles and what they represent will be the general big overview to document stuff and how effectively your small business is being run.
Where do you start?
One MVP client relies on SOPs (Standard Operating Procedures) to document all the steps with everything they do to fix the cars that come into the business, which is a car collision repair and reconstruction business. The damaged car is documented from the first time it rolls onto the lot to the final handing back of the keys to the owner to pay and drive away in the newly fixed car. This small business owner doesn’t rely on having all the details just in his head. He found a starting point to go over all the steps, document the processes and share the info with his team. This process also includes describing all the steps with deadly detail, all the complexities to systematize the entire process that even a new comer can come in and follow the check list!
For more info on peeling back the layers of the 4 cycles and documenting all the stuff within your small business tune into this week’s podcast on iTunes or http://maximumvp.com/dirty-secrets-small-business-radio-show-podcast/ or call Jack or Adam for help with your small business challenges at 877-849-0670.
Jack and Adam also announced that Dirty Secrets of Small Business is making the move to prime time! Starting on May 3, the show will air live on Wednesdays from 7:30 pm (EST) to 8:30 pm (EST) right after Tech Talk on WINT 1330 AM. The move to Wednesday evenings has the small business coaches, as part of the station’s must-listen-to lineup with other business shows scheduled to air in the evening time slots.
Do you have any How Questions of your own to email to Jack and Adam? Do it by sending your questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or submit a question on their web site at http://maximumvp.com/how/
If you have a success story or a question you would like to share, email or call (email@example.com or 877-849-0670). You can also call in during the show each week during April at noon (EST) – 1:00 pm on WINT 1330 AM, call 440-946-9468 to ask your question to the Maximum Value Partners’ coaches or tweet your question to @MaximumVP.