The entrepreneurs are being occupied by nature: customers, suppliers, calls, taxes, alliances, family, friends, life person, etc. It is difficult to balance our professional and personal lives, grow as people and not lose our minds in the process. It is difficult but not impossible and technology can help us do it.
Today there are many techniques and digital tools that can be of great help to us to carry out the tasks of our ventures , manage the resources we have, manage interactions with our clients and even automate routine processes.
The first thing we must have is control over the activities and for this there are tools that allow doing it as a team, such as Asana , Trello or Monday , all of them provide a way to visualize the completed tasks, in what status they are, categorize them, assign them give them an end date, etc. You need to create and manage short-term projects, let’s measure their progress, find out if tasks are being accomplished, and find out which items were made according to plan and which were not. I recommend you, if possible, delegate this task to someone else and that this person only reports the status of the projects to you, although that does not mean that from time to time you do not have to login to these tools.
Another key point in any team is communication, this ensures good execution and monitoring of tasks and allows collaboration. In this case, I recommend that you avoid ” email chats ” which are conversations made with email responses since their interface is not adapted for quick viewing. I advise you to use Slack , it is a WhatsApp but with “steroids”, where you can make channels or groups for different topics, quote and make message threads, send documents, view them without leaving the application, use quick commands to do tasks and the most powerful : connect various applications to notify you of events and automate tasks. For example, I have Asana connected to Slack so that they notify me better what has been done with the tasks that I follow.
Another key point is your knowledge base: a series of documents, manuals or videos that serve as learning for your entire company, reduce training times and encourage collaboration. One of the most efficient ways to do this is through a cloud storage service such as OneDrive , Dropbox or Google Drive.(I personally recommend the last one, due to the great handling of access and reading permissions that it gives you) here it is necessary to make a general folder for all the members of the company and one per area or department since there will be things that will not be necessary for some people. And within this area, it is very important that you try to use this database as much as possible, each frequent question or routine process must be put inside so that a person does not invest time that may be used in another activity when explaining the execution of a task.
Another very important issue is the relationship with customers and this is where the famous CRMs (Costumer Relationship Manager) come in, which allow us to generate customer databases, automate their interaction, see how the sale is in progress, etc. Programs such as Hubspot , Monday , Microsoft Dynamics , Salesforce or Zoho are among the most popular on the market, although there are many more. What is very worth doing is connecting them with other softwares such as Asana, Slack, Dropbox, etc., so that you can have an entire ecosystem where, for example, from Hubspot a seller is generated in Asana, they are notified in Slack using a Google Drive template about the sending of a quote and all this generating just by putting it in the CRM.
Automation in detail
There are many different types of software , be it inventory, point of sale, human resource management, etc. But to digitize processes there is nothing like having your own system and custom automation can be done, you know (or should know) your processes very well, you know what tasks can automate and let a machine be aware of them. To do this, you can also use programs or scripts to help you. Returning to the example of the customer’s quote, a Script can be made that is constantly checking if an Asana task was created and if that was the case, it generates the quote automatically and sends it to the sales agent or even directly to the client. The latter can only be designed by a developer.
Today the company that not only does not have a website or networks but is not even thinking about digitizing, generating and subsequently automating its processes already has a considerable disadvantage compared to its competition. This company takes more time to do its tasks, therefore it can serve fewer clients and progress more slowly. If even the importance of this type of investment in your business, just see some of the companies that have failed and ask them why, usually the organization is one of the main causes.