Posts tagged ‘Coach’

Actioncoach logoOn Friday I attended a planning workshop run by Andrew Kureishy an award winning business coach. 

Andrew is a valued client of mine and his invitation to join his GrowthCLUB for the day was welcomed but to warrant time away from the office I had some expectations for ROI (typical accountant mentality I’m afraid, but I do understand the value of my time)

My primary objective was to see Andrew in action.  As an avid networker and an accountant that believes in adding value beyond the financial numbers, matching a coach’s style with my client’s personality and needs is just as important as understanding the services he offers and the knowledge he can share.

Obviously, I hoped to gain some personal benefit also.  When getting involved in structured learning, I do not expect to be able to absorb all of the information on offer or claim to be an expert by the end of the day, but to take away just a few new ideas or key pieces of knowledge makes spending the time attending worthwhile.

During this day, I achieved my primary objective and will certainly be recommending Andrew’s work to others. I was able to network with a dozen of his clients who were all very complimentary and felt that the money they had invested had been recovered several times over.

I also learned three or four things that I can apply to my business in the next few weeks. I’d like to share two of these with you.

Prioritising

The first is simple.  The things that make the most impact and therefore demand priority are not necessarily the things you want to do

The Action planning workshop used techniques to drill down to just three primary goals for the next 90 days as it would be difficult to focus on more than that in such a short time frame.  These three goals were ‘SMART‘ tested by Andrew and it quickly became apparent which of the three I had to make my priority even though it was the goal I favoured the least as the task at hand is boring in comparison, amongst other reasons.  This process was easy but far from comfortable and I’m less that pleased with the result but I know clearly now that if I reach my target it will have a big positive impact on my work, my position in the firm and ultimately the bottom line of my office P&L and once I have got this task under my belt I will be able to move on to more self-fulfilling goals.

I’ll let you know on 31st March 2010 whether I attained my target !

Time Management

Andrew was quick to point out that whilst diaries, priority task lists etcetera were helpful they are simply tools to make our work more effective.  To really master time management replace the word ‘time’ with ‘self’ and remind yourself of your goals.

Its about Time Series IIThe group decided that poor time self  management was a result of:

  • a lack of discipline, focus and/or delegation
  • firefighting rather than prioritising rationally
  • poor organisation skills
  • avoidance of important tasks / procrastination
  • being influenced by other people’s priorities
  • unrealistic customer demands
  • a needy / untrained team

Andrew challenged this and questioned our motivation.

How defined are your goals?    Does your dream have clarity? 

His advice was to create an avoidance list and ask yourself questions that will help your brain move from negative emotions that promote procrastination to logical thoughts that put the issues/tasks in to perspective.

If you would like to know his seven top questions to promote logical thinking to support your positive attitude, contact him at andrewkureishy@actioncoach.com

The information provided in this blog illustrates my opinions and experiences, it does not constitute advice and I do not accept responsibility for any actions taken or refrained from as a result of reading this post.

This is a guest post from Heather Townsend, an amazing twitterbuddy (It is unlikely I would have met her otherwise) of mine, who has helped me both on and offline with her friendly but focused approach.   She has several business hats, including The Efficiency Coach and Executive Village and is a mum to two gorgeous ‘little guys’ as they are affectionately known.  Follow her tweets for useful business tips and benefit from her sociable nature.

9 top tips for business efficiency

keep an eye on your goals..

keep an eye on your goals..

Whilst small is seen to be beautiful (and believe me, at 5 ft 2” high, I fully subscribe to this view!), SMEs are also assumed to be more flexible and nimble than the large corporations. An accusation often levelled at SMEs is that they don’t have the resource to implement large scale changes quickly, and will therefore, struggle to significantly improve their productivity levels, and therefore, efficiency. I wonder whether you find this to be the case?

Regardless of where you stand on this debate, here are my nine top tips for any size of company to improve its efficiency:

1. Think simple

Simple ideas and methods generally save time and help a business become more efficient.

2. Outsource non-critical processes

If someone can run a process better than you, for the same or cheaper cost for the appropriate level of quality, outsource it. For example, on the 1st October I will be handing over all my books to my accountant’s book keeper. This is a non-critical process which someone else can do better than me, and for less cost.

3. Help your customers and clients become more efficient

Let’s illustrate this point with a real live example, my IT man, David of Contact Consultants, supports my IT machine for free – unless I really manage to tie it up in knots. Every time I speak to David, he educates me in some way so that I am more self-sufficient and less reliant on him for support. How can you educate your clients or customers so that your ability to service their needs is more efficient or effective?

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4. Set yourself goals

If you set goals around improving your company’s efficiency then you are more likely to work towards creating a more efficient business.

 

5. Invest in automation

Whether you are a people hungry business like retail or a niche consultancy your largest monthly outgoing will be your wage bill. The greater the level of automation which reduces the amount of input by people, the more efficient your business. Compare and contrast the car factory of Henry Ford’s day to the modern production line in a mainstream car manufacturer.

6. Have a safety-conscious workforce

Accidents create down-time and extra costs. If you have ever had a claim brought against you for an accident at work, you will testify to this!

7. Look after, appreciate, and train your workforce

Happy, engaged, appreciated employees generally work harder and are more productive than unmotivated un-engaged employees. Think how much harder you work when you want to work somewhere rather than feeling as if you have to work somewhere. A skilled, motivated workforce is a must for good business efficiency.

8. Look at your product/service mix

If you can sell a higher-value product to your target market, you will normally improve your business efficiency. For example, if you currently sell homemade iced cupcakes, how much more could you sell a range of dairy or gluten free iced cupcakes?

9. Attract the right kind of employee

As efficient as your business may be, you are still reliant on having good quality employees to run your business processes. By attracting the right employee into the right role, you will build good business efficiency, one new hire at a time.

In your view, which of these nine tips for business efficiency should every company, regardless of it’s size, invest time and resource in implementing?

The information provided in this blog illustrates my opinions and experiences, it does not constitute advice and I do not accept responsibility for any actions taken or refrained from as a result of reading this post.