Publisher's Viewpoint

Ron Finklestein, president and owner of AKRIS, LLC stated in his YouTube video that there are three "key issues" most important to business owners and operators-they want more money, more time and more productive employees. He believes this can be accomplished with the right attitude, a strategy and good discipline. First, the owner, operator or CEO within any organization must take ownership of their businesses problems. They are your problems and without taking ownership of them, nothing will change. You can't just blame others for the issues. Second, a business must have a strategic plan. Without that, you are a rudderless ship going around in circles. With a clear strategy you can identify who your customer is, what skills your employees need to have and exactly what needs doing to grow your business. Finally, you need to stay focused and stay disciplined. A bad strategy that is well executed can be hugely successful. A good strategy that is not well executed will likely fail!

Define your role and keep on-point

Wikipedia says business leaders are responsible for "creating the business plans including the strategic plan created during the strategic planning process and associated resourcing plans necessary to cause the organization to be successful." The operational manager is responsible to bring the resources and processes together to achieve the objectives of the business plan.

Key Performance Indicators, or KPI's, are used to measure an organizations success. Success is defined in terms of making progress toward the strategic and operational goals. Choosing the right KPI is reliant upon having a good understanding of what is important to your organization and its activities. KPI's should be designed to identify improvements or failings and often identify other tasks that need addressing.

Wikipedia goes on to say "a business manager is defined as a person who manages the work of others in order to run a business efficiently and make a large profit." The business leaders should have working smarts of the following areas and may be a specialist in one or more: sales, marketing and public relations; research, operations analysis, data processing, mathematics, statistics and economics; production; finance; accounting, auditing, tax and budgeting; purchasing; and personnel.

Move forward to success with the right team

Clearly, there is no rational way to expect that any one person or couple of people poses all of these skills, no matter the size of their organization. Thus, the owner or operator must honestly identify their strengths and weaknesses and then fill in their skill gaps with a team of people who can effectively work together to achieve the company's best end-results. This does not mean hire friends or family that will tell you what you want to hear. A certain amount of healthy debate around different ideas leads to the best plans. Although, in the end everyone must agree to execute the plan to get the results desired. If you don't get the results you are looking for, don't just change the plan or the managers or employees thinking this will fix it all. Yes, in some cases switching people may be necessary. But first, rethink the execution strategy. Ask yourself the tough questions. Did you take all the steps that were necessary to make the plan work? If not, why not? Are your expectations and time lines realistic? What stages should you be at and when? What steps need to be done next to make it work?

And lastly, write this on your wall or put this on your desk so that you can look at it every day. A bad strategy that is well executed can be hugely successful. A good strategy that is not well executed will likely fail! Own your failures and successes.