Effective leadership is having a clear goal that inspires your group to quickly achieve it. How can you support your group taking action in their departments and thereby reach the company-wide goal?

Milestones Guide Progress

Establishing agreed upon milestones for the group can reduce confusion and disagreement about the sequence of action steps. Strike a balance between control and direction to avoid confusion. Invite the group to create a map to reach the goal.
Too much control and you stifle their leadership training and the value of new ideas that may hold greater possibilities than you currently see. Too little direction and the group’s diversity may result in discord and lost time. Your leadership here is crucial, and we’ll talk more about that in subsequent articles.

Develop Leadership Skills

One way you might move forward is to teach your group the leadership skills necessary to plan and budget their departments. It benefits you in two ways: you can observe and guide how they do it now and you make the group more self-managing in the future. The pleasure they get contributing to charting the direction of the organization inspires them to improve. If done consistently over time, they will require less of your time to be more successful operating the venture.
One goal of leadership is to decrease your importance in daily operations. This frees you to work more on company direction and the future. The value of your company is inversely proportional to your daily involvement in operations. Become least important to achieve greatest rewards.

Simple Written Plans

Encourage your group to read “Write Your Business Plan” and apply it to their department activity drafting their “Simple Plan Outline” for your review and comments. Ask department supervisors to rough out their ideas for the year and first, second and subsequent quarters.
Sales targets and marketing plans can be tied to purchasing seasonal stock with ideas for clearance of slow stock. Department purchasing budgets can be tied to these simple department plans. Once every three months the sales and actions accomplished can be compared to the plan and budget to evaluate and apply what’s been learned to the next quarters. In this way, annual department targets can be better accomplished by routine achievement of milestones. Plans must be flexible to adjust as new opportunities or difficulties arise. You may be planning an employee meeting. This article could contribute to that meeting. Let me know and we can discuss and modify instructions and outlines for your different departments.

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