Management books and courses are full of all sorts of business “Must Do’s and Tips” a Rainmaker should attend to. Many will talk about Product or Service, or Production, or Finance – and these are very essential. Yet, very few focus in on the top core components of a successful business and Team.
There are three such components, and if you focus on them according to priority, you will most assuredly have a successful business.
Those three components are: People-Process-Product/Service.
The first and most important component is your People. You must stand behind your People and allow them to help you. You begin by selecting People for specific positions that understand your core values, understand the mission of the business, and are team players who can take constructive criticism. As a Rainmaker, you should help each team member focus on their strengths and outsource for their weaknesses.
For example, if somebody is a good People person and can generate referrals, convert leads into prospects, and prospects into clients, yet they are very poor on the telephone, you could attempt to strengthen their telephone skills or simply hire an inside sales associate (ISA) whose primary skills is the love of the telephone. Doing this will place People in positions of strength (Agent = Networking and ISA = Telephone) and reduce the downside of anxiety as they attempt to overcome their weaknesses. Pushing someone to overcome a weakness can be costly, time consuming and ultimately, unprofitable.
Your People are elemental to the success of your business. By choosing good People and thoroughly training them (cross training as well!), then allowing them a degree of freedom so that they can exhibit their skills and common sense, you will be able to manage from afar knowing the entire business is built on solid footing of responsible and loyal People.
Further, should somebody make a mistake or get a complaint from a client, then this should be addressed with the parties at hand. It is your job to support your People. The old adage, “The customer is always right!” is true. However, you must support your People at all times. If they make a mistake this is only an opportunity for everyone on the team to learn. Generally speaking, there are no catastrophic errors in judgment by team members. As the Rainmaker, it is your job to learn from the Team and lead them based on your experience.
The second component is Process. This means you must have systems in place for all the various departments in your business, from Accounting to Staffing. Early on, it is recommended you establish proven systems and continually look to improve them. A good rule of thumb is to make a 1% improvement in your systems and your processes. Listen to your team members as they will point out errors or inefficiencies.
Finally, there is your product or service. Understand that this is always something in flux because the nature of competition is forcing you to constantly change, innovate, improve or remove your product or service. As the Rainmaker of your business, you must never be wedded to your product or service, but remain objective in seeing where it is in the market at any given moment. As the hard question of yourself, “Is my product or service adding value to what my customers want?” A successful business will continually ask that question daily. Your product or service will not look the same next year at this time, so embrace change.
Having these three components fully functioning and understood by everyone on the team or in the company, and understanding how your business shows up in the community for your clients, and finally, by continually adding value, will keep you well ahead of the competition.