The following content is paid for by GAD Consulting Services.
By: Precious (Zulu) Mvulane CA (SA), RA & founder and MD of GAD Consulting Services
They say “fake it until you make it”. Some entrepreneurs have taken this saying to a whole other level, and are so quick to share their business cards which say ‘Company Director’. That is until you look at their businesses and see their financial statements or bank accounts. You then realise that the company has no director, because there is nothing to direct.
Some entrepreneurs have never even worked for a company before and those that have, may not have done so at a supervisory level, which means they skipped all the required steps and went straight to being a company director.
In South Africa, whether you are a director of a small business or a listed company, you deal with the same issues. The only difference is a few zeros, nothing else. Small business owners must stop acting small and start running and managing their businesses as a company director.
Should you be the director of your company?
Firstly, you need to evaluate what you are good at and what you are not good at. Master what you are good at and look for support in the areas that you suck in.
There is no point in focusing on your weaknesses, life is too short. In most cases what you are not good at you don’t like much, so what is the point of beating yourself up about it? The trick is to learn the basics so you can assess and monitor.
You still have to know ‘what’, ‘when’ and ‘who’, but you don’t need to know the ‘how’. Focus on developing your abilities to manage yourself. Remember you cannot manage anything until you learn to manage yourself first.
Processes and structures
Secondly, have a clear structure of what is expected from you as a company director in terms of administration, business development and operations. Here is an organisation design I created for small businesses.
In each function listed above, be clear on how you are going to manage each of those processes. Remember you cannot manage what you don’t know. I know it’s difficult even to start, I have been there. Focus on administration in the first three to six months of your business, sort it out and get it automated.
For each of the functions, deal with the compliance or legal requirements first so that they do not hinder you later, for example when you are looking to secure funding only to discover that you don’t have the necessary financial statements or tax clearance. You may end up losing opportunities, including clients, because of non-compliance. Also, understand what each legislation requires.
Up skill yourself
Lastly, learn by reading books, attending workshops or training which will help you to implement processes and structures. Stop running a business without order or systems. If you do, you will experience the same failures over and over. If you don’t do what is required from you as director, your business will not grow because you are not growing as a director. You will direct nothing!
Ready to set measurable goals, learn to be accountable, increase your productivity and create a growth plan? Attend the GAD Simplified Business Strategy Development for Business Owners Workshop on 19 November 2019. The workshop will cover how you can differentiate your business from your competitors and increase revenue and margins, among others. Book Your Ticket HERE for the Johannesburg event.
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