Do you feel comfortable leaving your company for more than a week? What would happen if you were gone for a month? Does the question alone make you shudder? If you are not completely certain that the company would be fine and operations would run smoothly while you were gone, you are doing it all wrong.
There will come a time when taking time away from the office is required. It could be planned or unplanned and if you have not taken the appropriate steps to ensure the success of your organization in your absence, you are, in essence, slowly poisoning your company and writing it’s death sentence.
It is possible to take extended periods of time away from the office and have everything run top notch while you are away. Believe it or not, business owners that have taken the appropriate steps to ensure their company’s success do this all the time. So, how can you manage to step away with certainty? Here are some things you can do to feel comfortable getting away from the office.
Hire the right people, people that are much more experienced and knowledgeable than you in the area they will be working. When you hire people that are smarter and better than you, they help advance your organization and can “handle it” in your absence.
Train your staff to perform at a level meeting your expectations. If you work closely with your key staff, they will learn your expectations and rise to the occasion. This way if you are away from the office, they will keep the business up to your expectations while you are gone.
Educate your staff to make decisions as you would make them. When working with your key staff, ask them how they would make certain decisions before telling them how you have decided. Once they have finished, explain your decision and the reasoning behind your decision. Not only does this give your key staff the history of decision making in the organization but it also helps your staff understand how you make decisions. In time, you will gain trust in and stand behind the major decisions made by your key staff as they will be making these decisions under the influence of your style and experience.
Encourage collaboration amongst your team. Having multiple knowledgeable and experienced individuals collaborating on outcomes of decisions increases the success of the decision. Permitting your key staff to freely collaborate, even encouraging this in your absence, will improve outcomes and reduce the risk associated with major decision making.
Designate a single individual as the one with the responsibility and your full trust to make decisions that you will stand behind while you are away. After accomplishing all these points, you will gain trust in the processes, operations, and decision making occurring within your organization. So much trust, that you will feel comfortable taking extended leave, whether it is planned or unplanned. Regardless of the reason behind your absence, there must always be a designated leader. Too many people in charge means no one is in charge. This is why you must designate one individual that is fully entrusted by you to garner the responsibility of being in charge and making decisions that you will stand behind in your absence.
Not only will taking these steps allow you to feel comfortable taking time away from the office, it will also improve your organization’s overall productivity.
April Salsbury, MBA is a strategist, an analyst, an operational guru, a recognized leader and C-suite global healthcare executive with drive and focus for competitive markets. Co-host of The Business Forum Show and regular contributor to various business journals, she possess multi-functional and multi-national competencies with more than 15 years experience in business and healthcare. Her expertise is in invigorating revenue growth and infusing value of lean practices in growing companies through improvements to cash flow and operations management.
Fueling revenue, growth and profit, Salsbury & Co. is a consultancy firm focused on helping businesses and healthcare organizations achieve excellency. Our specialists have executive experience combined with deep functional expertise to provide our clients with services that drive real impact and results.
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