Lad talking business opportunities, the right and wrongs. What are you, numbers or culture?

Updated: May 13

Lad talking business opportunities, the right and wrong. What are you, numbers or culture?

Business opportunities.

Do we truly understand our business and processes? After 30 years in manufacturing I believe most companies DO NOT understand. Its not just about chasing the numbers to ensure we deliver the true KPI’s for the senior team. It so much more.

In my opinion there are two fundamental elements to creating a truly sustainable business.

1. Understanding true KPI’s that delivers to the bottom line and adds value for the customer

2. Culture, having the right culture throughout the workforce, shop floor up.

I have only experienced one company in my career where they have the right balance of the two, that was a Japanese company. It was a pleasure to be part of that organisation. This is where I learnt the true meaning of manufacturing. Where them and us did not exist.

It was a one team culture, everyone was equal, added the same value to the business. They were treated with respect and empowered to drive their section.

What can go wrong with the wrong culture?

When this happens business normally fail to hit their full capacity/potential. The lack of a GOOD culture will seriously damage your bottom line, id not close you down. For the number chasers out there, this may happen to you.

You may be experiencing adverse variances, high customer complaints and missed delivery dates. You may be experiencing a high sickness rate or employee turnover rate? These issues will hurt you and your customers. You can shout and scream to your direct reports to work harder, push their team members or even fire someone.

Maybe you will see a short term burst in the number towards the positive? More than likely… However, this will be short lived, it will not be sustainable over time. This is where most businesses get it wrong!

So, what does your company look like, are you a number chaser or a culture-based environment? Are you the right mix of both?

Culture and business

How do you analyse your business?

Firstly, you can analyse the numbers, see where you have variation deviation from the standard. This is the simplest way of looking at your processes.

Now the difficult part, the culture. For any leader this should be the most important goal and objective for the coming year. How do we improve our work culture, what must I do as a leader in the business?

This will take time; some experts say it takes 1-2 years for a company to truly evolve its culture to a point of improvement. This time frame is why most fail, they take the easy option out, the negative culture I mentioned earlier.

Speak and work closely with your employees, understand what drives them in work, what makes them tick. I guarantee it will be different to yours. Think of jobs and careers, do you know the difference between them, you should. It will help you analyse your employees.

We could talk forever on culture, I specialise in culture within a business. I believe that people are the most important assets within your business. If you would like to know more on business culture let me know. I have 30 years’ experience, a Lean Six-Sigma black belt and business leader.

In the past I have contributed towards a business with an annual turnover of £200MM. My part in that business helped grow output by 50% over 5 years.

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