Everyone in business has a natural desire for it to be a successful, profitable and highly regarded enterprise. Beside the obvious requirement that a business is selling high quality products or services, there are a number of factors that are likely to contribute to the development, consolidation and preservation of a thriving concern. In this article, we look at some of the most likely factors to create a successful business.
The importance of leadership in any business cannot be overstated. Leaders in a business should lead by example and their leadership model should filter down through the entire workforce. Business leaders must be able to inspire, encourage and motivate the workforce to perform to the best of their abilities. They should be able to communicate effectively with the workforce, either directly or indirectly through the management team, in a way that invites and encourages individuals to contribute to the organisational objectives. Without detracting from their role as leaders, they should endorse every member of the workforce as an integral part of the team, with every member of that team being crucial; to the pursuit of a common goal.
It should be stressed that the need for inspirational leadership extends beyond simply the owners of the business and its senior executives. Every division, branch, department and team will require the type of leadership described above, thus emphasising the importance of ensuring that the best characteristics of quality leadership flow from the top downwards.
Clearly, skilful management and effective leadership will often overlap, particularly in smaller organisations. However, there are certain aspects of management that might be separated from and, in fact, depend upon the more dynamic contributions of the business leaders. An essential pre-requisite for any manager, at whatever tier and in whichever departmental discipline, is the ability to communicate effectively with both the business owners/leaders and the staff. Managers should be capable of adopting and implementing the business systems, policies and practices that have been prescribed by its owners and of ensuring that the personnel under their management do the same. They should be capable of making important decisions but equally able to recognise when they need to consult at a higher level. A good manager will bring out the best in the staff through encouragement, mentoring and reinforcement, with the objective of developing a confident, committed and contented workforce. As in the case of leadership, the ability to motivate may prove decisive to successful personnel management.
A Contented Workforce
In an earlier article we looked at how a responsive employer might create a happy workforce. There are a variety of ways in which the owners and managers of a business might assist in ensuring that its personnel enjoy being part of the workforce. These might include:
- Providing appropriate motivation and rewards for performance
- Showing consideration and empathy, particular when a member of staff is facing personal difficulties
- Communicating clearly, consistently and honestly
- Demonstrating leadership by example
- Sharing the successes of the organisation
- Offering worthwhile career incentives
- Providing a comfortable working environment
The creation of a contented workforce will result in a productive, motivated and positive staff team who will feel part of the organisation and an essential component in the achievement of its goals. Performance standards, customer care and pride in personal attainment are all likely to be enhanced, resulting in a corresponding positive effect on the operation of the business. Equally importantly, it is likely to engender a sense of loyalty, resulting in a greater likelihood that the workforce, who are integral to the continuing success of the business, are retained rather than lost to a competitor.
The implementation of a business model that incorporates these frequently overlapping characteristics will go a considerable way towards producing a thriving, responsive, effective organisation, which will enjoy the benefits of positive, focused, consistent contributions from its owners, senior executives, management and the entire workforce, who invest jointly in its business culture and the pursuit of its corporate goals.