As a small business owner, you’re more than likely familiar with the highs and lows of time management. Let’s face it, time isn’t easy to manage, especially when you’re the leader of a team. Perhaps you and your employees go into the shop with the intention of completing specific tasks, but distractions arise and the work doesn’t get done? Or maybe policies aren’t established, it’s unclear as to who is responsible for what and before you know it, it’s the end of the day.
Approaching the problem is the first step. When the right procedures are set and put into place, your shop’s workflow will run accordingly.
Here are three ways to improve time management in your shop:
Eliminate the distractions
Identify anything that distracts the whole team. Is the music in the shop set at a reasonable volume? You’ll need to minimize the noise to prevent any forms of miscommunication. Are the tools, paints and parts neatly placed in their rightful areas and absent from any walkways? While accidents are bound to occur, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t try to prevent them from happening. One slip, fall or spill can affect everyone’s time.
Define priorities and assign them
When there are no goals and due dates established, postponements will occur. Try implementing deliverable actions by meeting with your team each week. This can be done by providing written descriptions (on a board or electronic screen) of the responsibilities each of your employees are expected to fulfill. Not only will everyone have a solid grasp on time, but they will also have a defined understanding of their workload.
Analyze how the work is being completed
This is not to be confused with micro-managing. Remember, it’s essential to your business that your employees take ownership of their work. However, you must first see how tasks are being completed so that you can lead everyone in the right direction. Take a few minutes to watch how each of your techs and mechanics work. Ask yourself if they’re utilizing their time wisely and producing at the standard rate. If not, suggest ways on how he or she can improve.
To keep the momentum going, you can also turn production into a monthly or yearly competition and reward the fastest tech or mechanic. This a great way to keep your team motivated.
With the right attitude and approach, your efforts can be successful. At Management Success, we are committed to providing shop owners and their staff from across the US and Canada with effective management training. This year, we are welcoming all shops to our Fall Convention in Pomona, California. At our convention, you will have the opportunity to network with hundreds of shop owners, attend special workshops geared toward your business, learn how to master your vision and much more.