Volume 49, Issue 1- January 2014

Best Practices

New Ways of Thinking
Embrace Change to Help Your Business Succeed
by Richard Voreis

The theme of our discussions is how to be more successful in challenging times. Our focus will be on new and different approaches to conducting business, as well as how you can achieve positive results that impact your bottom line, motivate your employees and make customers want to do business with you. This may require you to embrace non-traditional ways of doing business. So keep an open mind.

Stability does not come from not changing; it comes from continually reassessing what works and what doesn’t work so well anymore and then discarding what doesn’t work or can be improved.

Don’t Fall Behind

It is extremely important to embrace change and industry best practices because standing still is just another way of falling behind. Here’s an interesting and appropriate quote from Benjamin Franklin: “When you're finished changing, you're finished.”

Said another way, maintaining the status quo in a changing construction economy is the “kiss of death.”Your company needs the following:

• Effective priority planning process;

• Effective execution of the top priorities; and

• Enhanced employee engagement and accountability.

To determine if your company is prepared for a challenging future, answer these “yes” or “no” questions:

Does the company have an effective annual priority planning process? ( ) Yes ( ) No

Is there a formal plan being executed throughout the entire employee organization that has everyone focused on what is required to succeed and are all employees held accountable? ( ) Yes ( ) No 

Has the company identified ways to enhance the engagement of both management and staff in the process of priority planning and execution of the plan? ( ) Yes ( ) No

If you answered “no” to two of these basic questions, then your company needs to make serious changes. 

If you answered “no” to three, then your company really must change and you must initiate these changes as soon as possible.

Roadblocks Along the Way

Don’t be surprised if you encounter some resistance to change. Some management and staff members may have the feeling of “things have been done the same way for years,” and that’s okay. You’ll need to continually emphasize that change is good.

As you implement change, your focus should be on the following:
• Make your company a place where the best people want to work;
• Make your company a place where the best customers and vendors want to do business; and
• Retain and keep your valued employees and customers.
How do you feel about your answers to the three questions I asked? At the very least, challenge yourself and your company to change. Remember what Benjamin Franklin said.

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