It’s a tale as old as time – business optimization not only helps propel a business forward, it has become a precursor to success. Just attend any seminar about improving efficiency, innovation, and adaptability, and chances are you’ll hear the words “business optimization,” “synergy,” and “interconnectedness” thrown around here and there. For the most part, attendees would nod in agreement and take notes.
But what does ‘business optimization’ even mean? Most people imagine a system where those in an organization are able to conduct their tasks in a way that is streamlined (another buzz word) and devoid of figurative potholes when going about their day. Yet, most don’t even know how to go about it. Everyone has heard of business optimization and are spending thousands of dollars to make it happen; but the trickiest part is conceiving a system that fits into an organization and can be implemented with relative ease.
Business optimization is defined as the process of identifying and executing new ways of making a business run in a more efficient and cost-effective manner. This could include simply identifying what can be improved in an organization to introducing sophisticated software that lays out possible courses of action and highlighting the best one for a particular decision. In order to make this last, there must be a constant drive to improve the way the organization operates, even if prior initiatives have already been made.
But ultimately, the trick lies not in what should be done (obviously all businesses and organizations are different), rather *how* it should be done.
Getting the gears moving
In terms of making business optimization happen, I swear by simplicity. Business optimization works best when changes are driven internally and supported by software that helps decision-makers come up with options to determine which changes work best in a particular situation. With this said, managers should look into three main concepts when pursuing business optimization: facilitating better communication, streamlining task management, and ensuring that everything is recoverable in the event of an emergency.
It is often helpful for organizations to build business optimization frameworks that outline processes and goals as a way of guiding the team towards greater efficiency. This often involves starting with low-hanging fruit (i.e. the most identifiable aspect) which is easier to recognize and fix to get the ball rolling. Once these have been addressed, managing larger and more arduous tasks becomes much more approachable.
Organizations differ in strengths and weaknesses, so choosing what to address first will depend on the capabilities of a company. Nonetheless, as with any major endeavor, everything starts by facilitating effective communication which requires investing in functional platforms that are easy to use and understand. This includes messaging applications, CRM platforms, and project management tools that not only make it easier for team members to communicate with one another, but also creates cohesiveness in terms of tasks that need to be get done. While many think of effective communication as simply being able to instantly talk to team members, it is also about conveying clear timelines for projects, ensuring interconnectedness among different tasks, and providing clear information to everyone in the organization.
Once an organization has established effective platforms for communication, it becomes infinitely easier to streamline tasks between team members. This means it becomes easier delegate tasks, monitor performance, and identify key targets to improve the business. But does it stop here?
Well, no it doesn’t.
I think the most important thing for any company or organization pursuing business optimization is have effective leadership – managers and team leaders who can effectively illustrate their vision to their team members. There is simply no use in saying that you will make improvements or create cohesiveness without being able to let the team know where the organization is going and integrating them into the process. Ultimately, everyone has their role to play and motivating team members to help make that vision a reality is what truly makes business optimization happen effectively.
Is pursing business optimization an easy task? Not always. But being able to objectively look at your organization, identify what needs to be done, investing in the right tools, and leading your team in the right direction is ultimately what will get you there.
Trust us. We know how it works.