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X5 CROPS Report – Operational Efficiencies – November 2013

This month’s CROPS Report has a focus on Operational Efficiencies. Do you have the RIGHT mix of people, things and time?

Customer Satisfaction

Customer Satisfaction

When it all boils down to it,  your customers’ satisfaction rests on the shoulders of many important aspects of your business, but most importantly on the shoulders of your employees. As explored in the featured article, how you attract, retain and develop your workforce has a huge impact on your business success. Building the right operational efficiences that facilitate these elements will enable your business to grow.

Risk Management

Risk Management

You can run a huge risk as a business if you live only in the present. Effectively developing systems and processes that set your business up for success is imperative. Forward-thinking leaders plan for tomorrow by training your up and coming employees for tomorrow’s management and leadership roles.

Operational Efficiencies

The feature article is listed below!



People! People! People! That is what makes your business operate and grow. Developing programs for attraction and retention to keep your employees engaged will enable your business to succeed. When was the last time you reviewed your hiring practices or compensation structure? Do you have a knowledge transfer program to prevent important knowledge from walking out the door with retiring baby boomers? What about a succession plan? Do you know who your leaders for tomorrow are?


Your sales are directly impacted by your people and the systems you have in place that facilitate success in sales. How are you supporting your people through systems that encourage and motivate business development? Are your processes and procedures efficient and easy to operate? Set your people up for success by having the right people in your sales-related positions with the right support systems and operational guidelines.

Feature Article: Do You Have the RIGHT Mix of People, Things and Time? Feature Article: Do You Have the RIGHT Mix of People, Things and Time? 

You may ask, what is Operational Efficiency? Here is a perfect example:

Having the RIGHT PEOPLE doing the RIGHT THINGS at the RIGHT TIME.

At X5, we love “Improving Business Process through People”. This blog offers perspective on the “People” side of Operational Efficiency. A tale of two companies:

Let’s call the first company: Complicated Corporation

Business is pretty good, but so many challenges occur in the business. The President, “Hands on Hank”, likes to touch everything that goes on. His team of managers have a challenge making decisions and executing on providing service to their customers. Role Clarity is non-existent and lots of job overlap occurs, or things just fall through the cracks, as it is unclear who does what and when. Team members lack direction and are not certain as to what projects are urgent or important. When one of their manager’s misses a day of work, the wheels fall off and the operation’s productivity and efficiency almost comes to a stand still. There is no structure, process or consistency.

Let’s call the second company: Impressive Inc.

The President and leadership team have well defined roles, along with their entire team and they instil trust and empowerment in their people. Customer service is top-notch and deadlines and commitments are achieved as there is structure, follow-up and accountability. They invest in their people with effective training and continuously communicate expectations to ensure everyone is operating on the same page. Daily/weekly coaching is the norm to continuously reinforce quality, consistency and areas to improve on. There is structure, process and consistency, regardless of who performs a task.

Operational Efficiency in business is critical to business success.

Having the RIGHT people: 

  • Take the time to recruit wisely and ensure your hiring process has the necessary steps to align the candidate with your company. They may lack experience in certain areas, but have the required technical skills.
  • Ensure you have a training program in place to get this new team member to a place of effective competence.
  • Inspect what you expect. Communicate expectations to ensure everyone is on the same page.

Doing the RIGHT things:

  • Role Clarity is key. Take the time to create, build or refine role descriptions.
  • Hold the right people accountable for the right things.
  • Ensure that the tasks and duties assigned add value to your organization and to your customer.

At the RIGHT time:

  • Ongoing daily communication on tasks, assignments and projects are vital to business efficiency.
  • What is a priority today may not be tomorrow.
  • Does your team know what is a deadline for the end of this week?
  • Do they know what is expected of them and how long it will take to complete the project?

Is your organization improving business process through people?

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