What is Process Improvement and "The DMAIC"?
Process Improvement is a proactive approach to identifying the core processes to your business, analyzing them, and optimizing them to make what you do better!
Big companies employ Business Process professionals to continuously improve and optimize their processes to save money and improve the bottom line! So, why does small business not take advantage of the benefits?
Frankly, they are busy running their business, it can be costly, and they don't know about it!
Do Less Stuff and Make More Impact
Small businesses have people that wear many hats unlike a large company where roles are more defined. When working in small business an employee can often feel like they are firefighting. People that work in small business love it, but feeling like you are making more impact in the same time or less time is extremely satisfying!
When a business improves 3-5 core processes, they work more efficiently. This means that whether they are a soloprenuer, a team of 5, or a team of 30, the people are able to focus, do more, and be doing the right things.
Aligns Activities to Goals
The goals a business has each year are super important to be focused on. Smart businesses align their overall business goals to what their team focuses their time on. When improving process, it is very important to always start with the goals. This will help ensure that the processes that are worked on have the most impact to the business.
Deliver Consistent Quality
Let's face it, whether the small business in service based or product based, quality is important. Many, many years of research shows that the more consistent you are in your process to deliver your service/product, the more consistent your quality is! This is the most important part of process improvement for small business because the relationships with customers is more intimate. There is less room for mistakes and lack of quality.
Your quality and business are worth it!
For the quality alone, you definitely should work with a Small Business Process Professional. You should expect to pay between $40-$90/hr which is affordable for the impact this will make in your business. However, we suggest you work with someone that works on project pricing! This helps you keep costs from creeping up and surprising you!
What is keeping you from improving your process?
Image Credit (https://blog.teamwork.com/teamwork-gets-a-new-home/)
First, all entrepreneurs are concerned with the almighty DOLLAR! We are not cheap, but frugal and pennywise! So this is the number one reason we LOVE Teamwork! We useTeamwork Projects to manage all of our client's projects.
You guys... I mean, it is a no brainer! When you are dealing with many clients simultaneously, you need to manage the tasks, the time, and the resources! Well, this does it all for $49 per month! Not per user... Total per month!
WORTH EVERY PENNY!
You know how you have the same set of tasks for onboarding a new client? Well, you can build that template of tasks once and every time you have a new client, you assign the template to the project... BAM! All the steps get added in allowing YOU to be consistent every time in how you deliver service! You guys, in the small business world, this is priceless! Get the steps out of your head and in a system! OH.. and tasks can be recurring, too!
For our organization this is HUGE! We can invite our client and our team members to a project without any additional cost! For a small business, this is huge! You may be like us and have part-time people that assist you! When you have to pay per user, that mean you cannot collaborate with your clients and team effectively. I know you do it too... You buy one license and share the username and password for other applications to save on the per user cost! Well, with Teamwork Projects, you don't have to! Invite and collaborate away!
Email from the application
You can send messages to all or some people assigned to the same project! Plus, you can brand the messages so that your logo shows up everytime! No worries about not being able to see what the last communication to the client was! It can all be seen from the project! You can even make messages private so that when an issue arises with a client, you can message internally as well! (that never happens, right?)
The Integrations save you TIME
Bigger businesses can afford to build custom integrations between systems that don't talk to each other. Us small businesses suffer through systems that don't talk by entering in information two and three times! What a time waste!
Teamwork Projects has built in integrations with systems such as HubSpot CRM (what we use), QuickBooks Online, One Drive for Business, Dropbox and more!
If that wasn't enough, you can create an integration using Zapier.com . You can create a system requiring the least amount of double entry possible! This is worth $49 a month for your business, Hands Down!
And there is a mobile app!
It's worth taking a look at! It is free for 30 days and you can sign up by clicking the image below! (We can help you implement it, if you need that)
Go save time and money - Automate your business!
Does your desk look like this?
Perhaps your desk is cleaner but you have all your business cards in a file? How do you get the information from the card to your contacts? Manually?
FullContact Premium is worth the tiny investment!
How much do you value your time at? $40/hr? $125/hr? If Full Contact can save you 1-2 hours of time a year, it is worth the $99/yr all on its own!
The Best part?
Use Zapier.com to create a "Zap" to your CRM, MailChimp and more every time a new business card is added.
Now the process looks like this (This is how we use it)
Share cards on the GO
Share the card with a friend and be a connector! No longer do you have to physically hand someone a card! Click SHARE CARD in the app and BAM - You can email or message the card to the person that needs it - automatically!
Let the App do the work
The app will automatically search for contact details, like social media pages, for you. Don't like what it found? No worries! You can accept or reject any updates!
The app will also check for duplicates! This is great! If you are like me, you may have forgotten you already added that person a few months back. AND you forgot to check before you scanned the card again! Duplicates can be merged too! I love no duplicates in my database!
How to get it - iPhone & Android
Having the right goals is the key to make your social media activities successful. Selling on Social media occurs but it cannot be the primary goal.
#2: Increase Website Traffic
You want to drive the people to your website! You have more information there for people to read and learn about how you help them. Plus, increasing website traffic helps your SEO. It also helps you increase brand awareness and educate the masses on how you can guide them to success. When you use social media to send someone to your website, that is twice the exposure to your brand!
#1: Increase Brand Awareness
This is the most important goal! You have heard people say Find Your Tribe! Social Media can help your do that for your business. Once you find them you want to engage with them. When your tribe engages with you they start to recognize your brand! To assist in this, make sure that all of your images, videos, and posts are branded! Use your brand colors and logos on everything you post! Remember, the more they see your brand the easier it will be for your to be top of mind for them!
Stay Top Of Mind by Exposing your Brand
Selling your services/products is can occur and will eventually. However, it is not ever the primary focus!
1. Too many hashtags are annoying
Hashtags are fun and flirty! They even help you get exposure! #But #too #many #hashtags #are #SuperAnnoying! Use no more than 2 hashtags in a post. Readers stop reading the posts because it actually hurts their brain to figure out what you are trying to tell the reader. Keep it simple!
2. Only using social, silly hashtags
A hashtag is a simple way for people to find and join conversations on a particular topic. Many companies use hashtags to track who is engaging in a campaign. Who do you think is tracking #blessed? Or #ilovecats? However, to help you gain visibility, find a hashtag that is tracked by those that will see it! (#EntreLeadership or #ShareaCoke are great examples)
3. Not having your own company hashtag
Create your own Hashtag and use it! Our domain in YourRH.com and our hashtag is #YourRH! It is our brand! What is yours? Having a simple, brand specific hashtag that is used consistently, helps your followers recognize your brand! They may even start using it!
Hilary understands what it is like to balance family, business, and purpose. She has a growing business, 3 kids, a marriage and is involved in her community. She wants to connect people to the right resources.