While running a business is hard work, managing a business for someone else requires attention to detail, the ability to put in long hours and a long view of how to get where you need to be. If you are an operations manager, you need to ensure that every element of the business is running smoothly, and are able to forecast with some sureness where the business is headed.
Of course, you might have a hard time doing all this if you don’t have the right tools for success. Just as a carpenter would be lost without his trusty hammer, the business manager needs to have the right tools for the right job on hand when they need it.
Can You S.W.O.T. it?
This silly looking set of letters actually stands for one of the most beloved business tools that just about every business manager uses. The letters stand for: Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. By applying this very popular analysis tool to just about any kind of situation, many managers have found it gives them a tool to solve anything.
The first two refer to internal analysis and the last two are an analysis of the things that will affect a business from outside of the company. Combined they give a business manager a great tool for studying the current situation and making an analysis on where the company needs to adjust their models.
Managing Your Resources
Every business has to make as good use of their resources as they can, just to survive. But if you were to use a software tool to manage inside and outside resources such as the Microsoft Dynamics AX you would be able to respond faster to changes. This is why these types of operations management tools have become so popular with managers today.
They can give a manager an overview of how work is being done, why it is done in a specific manner and even show them ways to improve efficiencies. For enterprise-sized businesses that are looking to grow, this is essential software for organization and inter-department coordination.
Analysing Your Product
Sometimes it isn’t your internal business or even your resources that are at fault, it is the product itself. There are a number of great tools out there to help managers and small business owners analyze their product to see if adjustments need to be made.
Markets change and so sometimes the best shift in a business is to look at whether the product you are offering is any longer relevant to the marketplace where it is selling. Boston Matrix is one product that many managers use to address this situation, but there are several good products to help a manager assess if changes to the product will help bring back sales success.
Combine for Best Success
Of course, it is a rare business that will only find one area that needs improvement if sales are dropping or market share has diminished in the past year. When looking at the overall picture of the last few years, you may find that a combination of all three tools will be the best solution.