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Changing your corporate culture as your business grows

When you add manpower to your growing business, substantial changes in the organization need to be made
By Mari-An C. Santos |

Orders are pouring in, your employees are working at maximum capacity, you?ve ordered additional equipment, and you know you need to take on additional manpower to help fulfill demands. This is good news, of course, because these are signs your firm?whether you started a home-based business or a brick-and-mortar store--is really growing. However, additional staffing means change in setup, which in turn entails a change in system, how things are done, and how your people will approach the new work environment.

 

Where changes must be made
Archie Armada of MarinduqueLand Corporation emphasizes that entrepreneurs should communicate to their employees that changes throughout the company are necessary for the benefit of the entire company. "The overall culture should easily be changed to drive optimal success." He shares that vital changes must be made in...

  1. Corporate Image. This primarily involves the dress code. Whereas jeans and a t-shirt were tolerated before, a more respectable business attire is called for?reflecting the new business environment.
  2. Professional Growth. From within, staff should make a conscious effort to conduct themselves as the work demands. A casual attitude should be replaced by a professional mindset.
  3. Leadership Styles. This refers to the members of the management team. More is expected of the leaders of the company, who necessarily must have a longer and farther view to be able to steer the company in the right--and more prosperous--direction.

 

Ruben P. Anlacan Jr. of BusinessCoach, Inc. cites the aspects that must be changed so your employees (and you) can cope with the changes:

  • Policies and procedures must be formalized. Instead of relying on seat-of-the-pants decision-making, you must have ready-made solutions. There will be less time to handle problems and you may no longer find it possible to give everything your personal attention.
  • Control systems must be set up. Formal checks and balances must be instituted since there will be more people whose integrity still needs to be proven . Furthermore, it is more difficult to keep an eye on things when your operations are extensive.
  • Legal concerns must be given attention. There will be more legal requirements and scrutiny as you get bigger. Take care that you are complying with all the applicable laws.
  • Company image must conform to the higher expectations of clients. What may be considered a minor issue when you were smaller may be intolerable if they now see you as a large firm.
  • Employee expectations must be addressed. They will expect more benefits and compensation from a larger company. You can, however, require a higher productivity to offset the increase in expenses.
  • Delegate, delegate, delegate! This is the most vital move. Unfortunately, this is where most small entrepreneurs fail. The main reason for this is the lack of trust. The founder usually believes that no one but himself/herself can do the job. To counter this, you must realize that there is a point where you will have more to lose if you do not have time to attend to other critical tasks.


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