Collaborative post – may contain affiliate links
During interviews, serial entrepreneur Elon Musk will often reference the fact that running a business is primarily about “solving problems.” Every day, there’s a new challenge to overcome.
But, as he rightly points out, there’s a big difference between a challenge and a headache. A problem is something new and unexpected – something that emerges from the general chaos of the universe. A headache is something you know is going to ruin your day.
In this post, we’re going to take a look at the two issues that cause more headaches for entrepreneurs than anything else, and what you can do about them.
Your IT Systems
The value of IT networks is so extraordinary that practically every business now uses them. They offer instant communication, productivity apps and tools for product development.
But when you think about it a little more, this setup strikes you as rather odd. IT networks are highly technical and specialized systems requiring expert knowledge to keep them operational, yet even the smallest of companies must somehow run their own. In other words, IT demands extensive expertise, but few businesses have it.
Interestingly, this doesn’t happen in any other areas. Almost all companies, for instance, hand over their accounting to a third-party agent who does it for them. The same often applies to marketing too. Entrepreneurs understand what they can do and what they can’t.
But when it comes to IT, there’s a feeling that it should all be managed in-house. Entrepreneurs are prepared to put up with the endless compatibility issues and downtime because they believe that they have no other choice.
Of course, none of this is true. Businesses can wholly outsource the management of their network to third-party providers, negating the need to struggle with issues. You can get more details on this with a simple internet search. But the bottom line is this: the moment you hand over the job to an agency, all your issues will evaporate.
Your HR Management
Business owners often say that doing business is easy – it’s managing people that’s hard.
In many ways, this is true. Employees can create all manner of problems for management and, in some cases, put company operations at risk.
The trick to solving this problem is to implement better HR practice, but how?
The first tactic is to upgrade HR software to make managing things like holidays, payroll and sick leave easier. Relying on spreadsheets is not a good idea.
The next step is to get everyone in your organization on the same page. Each member of your team should have a clear and well-informed idea in their heads of the overall goal and mission of the enterprise. What you don’t want is people working across purposes, with some going in one direction, and others going in another. That’s not good.
Finally, you need an HR setup that allows you to find the right people for your organization. Recruiting should be a priority from the outset, not something you leave until you have no choice but to make additional hires.