Hiring the right people and training them to work toward your business goals is the first step in helping you grow your business in accordance with your vision. Creating a system of accountability is the next step. Accountability is what will ensure that your hand-chosen, well-trained team is working the way you want it to advance your small business. With a few strategies, you can establish a system of accountability that will help your team work like a well-oiled machine.
Create job descriptions.
This sounds like an elementary business exercise. When you hire employees, from office managers to chimney technicians, you trust they understand what their jobs entail. While they likely will understand the basic functions of their jobs, what goals do you have for their positions? What functions — whether it’s establishing an efficient scheduling system, updating your website or booking new customers — do you have for those employees that will help your business to grow? Job descriptions should outline employees’ basic duties and how the positions fit into the overall business plan so employees understand their roles in moving the business forward.
With job descriptions in place, you need a way to qualify how your employees are performing their duties. This is one of the basic components of accountability: now that everyone knows what they are supposed to be doing, how well are they performing their tasks? You can establish whatever metrics makes sense for your employees and your business goals. That could mean tracking how many new customers the employees are bringing in each month, how many service calls employees are completing, or how long each service call takes them. You and your employees can’t truly evaluate how well jobs are being performed unless you have a way to track their performances. Tracking metrics can motivate employees to do better, and it can help them to understand where they are falling behind.
Establish a chain of command.
When you’re working with a handful of people, or less, the chain of command can seem irrelevant. But as your business grows, employees will need to know who they report to and who they are accountable to. For one, a chain of command lets employees know who to turn to with question and concerns. For another, it gives you a chance to delegate tasks in an efficient way. When it comes to accountability, the chain of command creates a network of employees who are monitoring performance and helping to focus on the business’s mission.
You have laid out what you expect from employees. You’ve set up a metric system to track how well employees are meeting their goals. You’ve created a chain of command to help keep the business moving forward. The final step in accountability is to regularly review how well your staff is doing in accordance with their mission. This type of accountability is just one more way to set and meet goals for your business, which is the only true way to grow.