words Al Woods
If you are a business owner who handles his/her own operations management, then you are actually saving a good deal of money for sure! However, that’s only applicable when you really know what you are doing and your actions are bringing in the expected profits.
If that’s not quite the situation, then you should either hire a professional operations manager, or perhaps go through the following tips to understand how anyone with the right knowledge and approach can become a better operations manager – owner or not!
It doesn’t matter how experienced or inexperienced you are at the job, evaluations and reevaluations need to be constant. To help make this process easier you may wish to use performance review software in order to maintain consistency in your results, and provide effective feedback to your workforce. In case you are not aware, or simply need a bit of reminding, go through the following points which should help you better understand the need for constant evaluations:
- When the manger/owner gets down onto the floor regularly, they can see what’s holding up the operations first hand
- Second-hand information is often biased or incorrect to some degree
- Understanding of the actual problems should help you solve them with better practicality
- The workforce will feel reassured and alert simultaneously to see the manager/owner frequently visiting the operational floors
- Not only does it result in better rapport with the workforce, but also a better understanding of the steps you need to take for seeing improvements
Train Your Employees Properly
A common mistake is to believe that you can get away with ill-trained employees on the operations floor. In case you think that proper training is not always worth the money, these reasons should be able to change your mind somewhat:
- If you fail to train your employees properly, they will be less productive than a trained workforce
- You will be losing money every working hour, on account of the loss in productivity
- Hiring employees without the adequate training can be illegal under most circumstances – think about the fines
- An employee without the proper training to handle a new machine, or even an old one, might get into an accident which could be catastrophic and tragic
- The authorities may shut down the operation and fine the business if the accident attracts their attention
- It is immoral and illegal to hire workers who are ill-trained for the job they must handle
- As a result, a single accident can set your company’s reputation and progress back to nothing
Complete Your Own Education and Training
After talking so much about the importance of training the employees, it would make no sense to not try and improve your own skills as an operations manager! Whether you are currently succeeding as an operations manager for your business or not, after completing a Master of Science in Operations Management degree, for example, your performance will improve. In other words, if you are doing well now, you will do a lot better post graduation. In case you are not doing so well, the operations management Masters will ensure that you improve drastically.
If you assume that you are not able to go back to school alongside your day job, know that this degree can be completed 100% online at an institution like Kettering University Online. This doesn’t require taking time off work, and only takes 18 months to complete. If you already have an undergrad degree in operations management, your skills will be sharpened to a fault after the course.
You should be humble enough to admit where your faults are in management, but not ready to give up on improvement opportunities either. The only way to know where you stand exactly in terms of your own and your business’s operation efficiency is to benchmark the performances against those of your competitors.
If a competitor of similar size is doing significantly better than your operational benchmarks seem to be showing, then you know more reviews and reevaluations are necessary. To help you with that, here are a few important parameters to consider:
- Irrelevant processes that have little or no relation to business goals
- Inefficient processes that reduces business productivity or impacts it negatively
- Identification of gap processes which are not there, but should be present to improve operational efficiency
To know more about the specific details of benchmarking operational efficiency, click here. It can be highly useful for the all-important evaluations as well. In fact, it is often a cumulative but segregated process with augmentative results.
For those that are wondering, the same tips we just discussed are all as relevant to new operations managers trying to get their foot in the door, as they are relevant to budding entrepreneurs.
In fact, even if you have years of experience in handling business logistics with significant success, there is no reason why you can’t improve on that outstanding performance even further, by just studying up a bit on the more modern methods of lean operations management. A master’s degree, or even a crash course on lean operations management can only help you hone your management skills more.