Do You Have the Right Team, With the Right Ability?

By Kevin Ward, Director, Conatus Financing Solutions

Published in Suffolk Director & Norfolk Director business magazines 2019

Business planning is a funny thing.
There’s always a lot of focus on visions or goals, with a lot of attention given to the actions and tasks required to achieve them.
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Do You Have the Right Team, With the Right Ability?

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Hopefully, there’s some form of evaluation to assess progress and review results. But one thing often missed is ensuring the company and individuals within the business have the capability to deliver what is required to fulfil the business plan.

Now this isn’t always down to ability. People might have the right skill sets, but they may not always be able to use them effectively, or at all. There could be other factors at play that have an impact, such as physical or mental health challenges, other people blocking them, or a lack of understanding of how to apply their skills to deliver the required results. A lack of tools, time or resources can equally hamper efforts.

Key factors that play a part in achieving your business goals are:

Capability

To avoid failure and to reach the full personal, business and staff potential, the capabilities of all parties need to be unlocked. And, quick and effective action needs to be taken to identify any shortfall in the skills and knowledge required.

Culture

A culture needs to be built, where people feel able to put up their hand and say they don’t understand. Skills tests and ways of identifying shortfalls in knowledge or ability need to be open, welcomed and applied in a non-threatening way, so any gaps can be identified, and the best solution found to filling them.

This may be by sourcing or providing training for existing staff or hiring additional and / or replacing existing staff to get the right skills. That culture of openness and frankness with good, honest feedback is crucial. The worst thing that can happen is having lots of people trying to fulfil roles that they can’t succeed in, as everyone is going to end up losing. Use external expertise if necessary, even if it’s just to identify the issues that need resolving.

External Factors

Very occasionally we see a business in trouble because of external factors. Most of the time the management of the business will be at fault in some way. The issue will often lie with a failure to make change or tough decisions, and it can often involve issues with people who aren’t fully capable of delivering what’s required.

External issues can often be mitigated, but you need the right people or resources in place to achieve this. So, the management, together with their team of empowered people, must review, look at all options and turn problems into solutions. Make the culture in a business one where people have the chance to fulfil their potential and the business will be capable of hitting its goals and vision.

With business planning, if your vision is slightly off, it can be recalibrated. If your strategy and its related actions are out of tune, they can be tuned up, and if you’re not evaluating or it isn’t effective, it can be easily changed. However, if you don’t have the right capability within your business and people, your business plan will fail.

Kevin Ward is director and co-owner of Conatus Financing Solutions and an Associate Member of R3, The Association of Business Turnaround Professionals, Contact Kevin on kevin@conatusfinancing.solutions or visit conatusassociates.co.uk Twitter: @ConatusA

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