A critical consideration in running a business of any type or size, regards asset and inventory management!
These days, small businesses are ecstatic about whatever good work comes into their business that will allow them to keep doors open, bills paid, and customers happy!
But, here’s a scenario that happens all too often: A customer gives your company a large, time-sensitive order. You’re in the middle of fulfilling that project when those too-familiar words ring out that send everyone into panic: “We’re out of … !”
Reaction Management Time
Again, some critical item is out of inventory, or was not special-ordered for the project! The inevitable NEXT words you hear are, “Quick, somebody run and go get it.” I call that reaction management—it’s like putting out a fire with a Q-tip. It’s costly, in time and money, and more than frustrating. That’s just plain old bad business!
A good inventory management system is vital to a thriving business. It’s easy to manage and it takes the worry out of all your projects and in-house needs.
Unfortunately, the “reaction” style of management is the norm in many companies that need to implement good systems. In such companies, nothing is done to fix the problem until a project is brought to an abrupt halt. Then workers stand around waiting (on the clock), while someone is ordered to, “Quick, run and go get it!” Often there’s an additional order to, “Pick up TWO, while you’re there!” You know, one to USE and one to LOSE! The extra one will likely get lost in a company’s clutter, because its inventory of consumables is loosey goosey.
High Cost of No Inventory Management System
Maybe it seems like TOO MUCH to have to plan and implement a proactive system to eliminate those seemingly small, non-conforming, system-busting events! I know, it can be boring, tedious and time-consuming. But then, count the cost in time and money, also in FRUSTRATION, to yourself and those around you, having to deal with recurring errors. Think about those who work for you, and how THEY perceive your management style and your company. Is it really the best work environment? What you hoped it would be?
When I visit businesses, I often hear from employees about the small, aggravating things that go on in the company. Over time, it gives them the impression that “EVERYTHING is chaotic.” And yet, as an owner, I know that may not be so.
Small Business Owners Risk Everything
Small Business Owners risk all to start and maintain a business, and aggravations come from all sides! Owners are the ones who worry when things break down, when taxes go up, and regulations press in. It’s on them when good employees are lost, when revenues are not enough to cover rising costs and much-needed retooling. It’s most frustrating when their customers are not getting the service they should expect.
Small business owners are the ones whose name, reputation and financial investment is on the line every day. I can relate—I ARE one! My hope is that other business owners will implement the best systems possible to make all their best efforts pay off.
How to Build An Inventory Management System
I lay out in my book, System Busters: How To Stop Them In Your Business, how to set up a simple, effective and proactive, consumable inventory system.
People work best when they have the right tools to help them do their jobs. An Inventory Management System is a powerful tool!
Quick, run and go get it!
Did I mention? Great systems work!