Before you leave your home and head to work tomorrow, stop. Today you are working from home, not for personal reasons or the chance to take it easy, but to perform a little test on the management systems and procedures you’ve put in place.
The smart entrepreneur builds a business than can still operate when they are not actually there. They do this by setting up processes and systems and delegating to key people.
That’s the theory anyway. But as experienced entrepreneurs will tell you, the minute the owner steps out the business, strange things can happen – decision get deferred, momentum is lost and place goes into caretaker mode.
To test whether your succession systems are in place and working, retreat from the office, tell your staff you are only available to deal with what they think are the most crucial matters and wait.
The calls and emails will tell you a lot about your company.
Do staff feel confident making big decision or small decisions? Or do they struggle to make decisions at all?
Does the bulk of the “core knowledge” of the business (about products, services and pricing) reside with the entrepreneur or has it been properly documented and spread throughout the organisation?
And can you cope with being “apart” from your business for even a small time?
It’s an interesting test and one you should get done today!
This article first appeared StartupSmart on March 22, 2011.