In the last two years businesses faced challenges that no one could have predicted. The coronavirus pandemic upended traditional operational models. Business operations scrambled to address supply shortages and supply chain issues, government-mandated restrictions that sent workers home to accomplish their tasks remotely, and the overall psychological toll of the pandemic, on individuals and on the society as a whole.
Yet, for many organizations across all business sectors the pandemic also fueled expansion and growth. In some cases, that growth has been explosive. But whether an organization grew by three percent or 50 percent, the challenges that arise — called “the growth gap” — are basically the same. And any reluctance or resistance in addressing these challenges may effectively stymie the advances made in growth and revenue.
This is because the time to turn to innovation strategies is when the growth aspiration and the current projected growth trajectory do not match up. The difference in degree is your growth gap and it demands a significant focus of the organization to determine and implement an innovation strategy — if that indeed is the solution.
Recently, Boost Midwest worked with a law firm operating in a field that the pandemic did not affect. It underwent rapid growth, reaching over $5 million in annual revenue. At that point, the firm was experiencing a growth gap, and its organizational chart no longer aligned with how it was actually doing business.
“As we looked at that chart, we realized there was a bigger challenge at hand,” BOOST Midwest CEO Marie Stacks observed. “There was simply innate misalignment, which ended up creating inefficiencies.”
The law firm needed to hone its vision in order to correct overlaps and confusion in the basic functions of the organization.
The truth is, not all organizations create a growth plan to follow and growth often happens at unexpected times and in unpredictable ways. So, Boost Midwest created a Operations Audit & Workshop that will — Analyze, Innovate, and Manage — to provide a roadmap to successfully targeting what areas are challenged by the growth gap and how adapt.
One of the hardest-hit areas for businesses throughout and coming out of the pandemic are staffing shortages. The labor market continues to be in flux, as workers take advantage of new opportunities in the workforce or decide to leave it altogether.
The Harvard Business Review reported in March of 2021 that small businesses with 50 employees or fewer saw employment drop by -5.1%, and large corporations experienced a -8.2% decrease in the size of the workforce.
“Companies seeking labor resilience should learn to measure risk, design bold interventions, and ensure strong executive-level support,” global business consultants McKinsey & Company noted just before the start of 2022.
Companies that take time to assess how they operate internally and externally to precisely highlight where and why their organizational structure is breaking down have an advantage. Not only can inefficiencies be discovered and addressed but employee satisfaction can be evaluated to help retain existing team members and attract new ones to fill holes — while factoring in the costs of acquiring new talent.
A thorough organization and operations assessment collects and uses data to:
Identify strengths in the four areas most affected by planned and unplanned growth:
Organizational Structure. The present foundation of the company that includes the organization chart, reporting structure, job roles and delineation of responsibilities associated with the various team members on your team.
Operations Optimization. This involves the processes and resources in place that allow your team to consistently deliver, manage projects effectively, and leave clients satisfied.
Communication. The more complex communication is, both internally and externally, the harder it becomes to actually deliver quality services..
Team Dynamics. People and processes are often the highest priority for alignment.
Provide the basis for an Action Plan that will:
Use Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) to monitor the overall health of the organization.
Create a change management plan.
Build in a successful process for implementing future growth and change.
Create a task timeline that assigns task owners, allows for innovation, and provides a level of accountability.
In our Operations Audit & Workshop, Boost Midwest collects data through a variety of channels, to capture both hard and soft data points. These include:
Revenue and expenditures.
Executive, project managers and team member surveys and interviews.
Every organization has unique aspects in how it operates. This means that there is no one-size-fits-all approach to change management. Yet there are broad similarities in the basic assessment process.
And for 2022, Boost Midwest offers the opportunity to dip into an Operations Audit & Workshop through a free Mini-Operations Audit & Workshop.
Is your organization experiencing rapid or explosive growth? Do you want your organization to gain the full benefits and advantages of that growth? This is your chance to see how to best position your organization for overall, long-term success.
Ready to learn more about how Boost Midwest can help you optimize your project management and operations? Schedule your free consultation call with us today using our Quick Schedule Link here.