At Vervology, we believe in the power of setting actionable goals as a way of obtaining success. However, for a lot of small businesses, those goals and objectives may tend to face outward more than inward. While external objectives are certainly important and hugely necessary, it’s important to take a look within every now and then.
What are you hoping to improve about how you do business? What steps can you take to get there? Today we are going to be breaking down what we mean by internal process objectives. We will also take a look at a few examples that might resonate with your own business.
Business Processes: What Are They?
A business process is a series of steps put forth and carried out by team members in order to improve efficiency and reach a certain goal. Each step in the business process is assigned to a team member, and it is their responsibility to carry it out.
An internal business process is all about how you can add value for your customers and their experiences. It is concerned with the steps you take to provide the experience your customers expect in the most cost-effective way. In other words, what goals need to be met in order to improve performance?
Some examples might include improvement of customer service, reducing internal errors, or increasing community outreach. Let’s take a look at these three in particular.
Internal Objective #1: Customer Service
Maybe your customer service has gotten a bit of negative feedback recently. Maybe you’re finding it difficult to communicate with customers in the way that they need. Or maybe your customer service is fine, you’re just looking to bump it up to the next level.
Achieving and maintaining excellent customer service is a huge part of being a small business; you’re doing what you do because you love it and want to see others benefit from it. So, how do you go about improving your customer service?
Well, in the business process, you would first need to set a specific goal. What exactly are you trying to achieve? An example might be “Our business will have a 30% increase in positive perception of customer service by patrons by March 1.”
From there, you would probably go about creating surveys in order to measure customer service satisfaction before, during, and after your plan goes into place. You would give certain employees specific jobs to complete and when they need to be completed. Everything should be written down since you have to refer to the plan throughout the process.
Internal Objective #2: Internal Errors
Everybody makes mistakes; it’s part of being human. However, if constant errors seem to be a problem, and it’s affecting your output and sales, it might be time for an evaluation.
For this situation, your goal might be something like, “Decrease the number of production errors occurring by 90% by June 30.”
You may want to start by looking into how production happens at your company and whether it is conducive to working conditions. Really try to get to the bottom of what is causing the errors and what steps you can take to fix them.
Do employees need a training day to get everyone on the same page? Is it time for a new CRM system? When you get to the source, create a specific plan for how the errors will be resolved and document the process every step of the way. Your customers and employees will thank you.
Internal Objective #3: Community Outreach
At first glance, this may not seem like an internal objective, but community outreach is solely dependent on the values your business holds most dear. This may include digging deep and looking into your roots. Why did you start your business in the first place? How can you transform these sentiments into a volunteer movement?
Based on what you see as your core values, you can take on any number of initiatives. Maybe you decide to close your business once a year and bring your team to volunteer together. Or maybe you can put together a scholarship for students. You could set up a poll on your social media every so often and ask customers to vote for which organization your company should send a donation to.
The sky's the limit here, and the objective will vary for each individual business. So, start by deciding what you actually want to do and then make a plan for putting the resources together to carry out the process. It will be a great way to engage with the community, energize your customers and employees, and make a positive change in your own backyard.
Putting it All Together
Whatever you may be trying to accomplish internally with your business, be sure to be specific and intentional about how you carry it out. Take the time to plan and set benchmarks to ensure your objectives are attainable. Make sure all of your employees are on the same page to ensure the process is carried out successfully and efficiently. Document everything that occurs before, during, and after your plan is in place. Then, you can see what worked and what will need improvement in the future.
And don’t be afraid to acknowledge that making internal changes can seem like a big, impossible job. Ask for help when you need it and take things one step at a time. You can achieve your goals and objectives. All you need is a little planning.