Moving Beyond Small Business Style
Business developers know that the move beyond small business style can be very challenging. The biggest problem for a growing business, and the key management challenge often proves to be getting the whole team to do the right thing consistently, while the business developers are not distracted too much with daily problems.
Traditional tactics like working longer hours, adding management layers, and using more task productivity tools are really not effective enough. Almost everyone uses some technology in business today, like application software and personal productivity tools that are of some value, but these tools address a small percentage of what business organizations actually must do. Often the day to day distractions and "fire fighting" activity start to take too much time for everyone, and key business developers may loose the time that they need to focus on opportunities.
Finding the way toward operational excellence is the key to solving this problem, and it must be accomplished in a way that is adaptable for change and growth. Making this move means using a more powerful type of business management vehicle to replace the traditional patchwork of tools and paperwork. Something that guides the team toward using best practices all the time, that implements the business processes end-to-end, and produces the performance characteristics that are most needed:
* repeatable results * sustainable methods * scalable for growth and change * suitable for the real-time world
opentaps fills the bill. It powers a large part of business operations adhering to defined processes for consistent results, and guiding team members as they perform their roles and communicate with each other aided by the system. There are fewer unnecessary interruptions, and business developers find that they are better able to keep their focus on business opportunities.
Insert Figure 1 here.
Figure 1 is a conceptual diagram depicting the opentaps system. Notice how it connects the customers to the business operating team via automated processes and a unified database. Also, notice how the operating team is supported in their teamwork activity by processes that function with unified database content to provide powerful "contextual collaboration". That is, the whole team works with the latest real-time business data about the customer, processes, and status of activities. The result is better, more consistent performance, stability over time, and team learning. That means the business can grow with less problems.
In the next section we will take a quick look under the hood to see what opentaps can implement for the business developer who is interested in moving forward.