A fellow bookeeper came to us recently and talked about how they were having difficulties with their day to day schedules, working excessive hours and the general dissatisfaction with the the business. What this came down to as much as anything else was a lack of organisational structure, a heavy reliance on the owner to get things done and poor time management. The end result here was a seemingly successful business which was stifled by its own disorganisation.
We suggested to Rachel (we’ll keep real names out of this!) that we develop an individual mentoring program to assist with these issues. The program we outlined for Rachel includes fortnightly telephone contact, the option for additional calls and messages to be exchanged and the setting of weekly, fortnightly and monthly goals. The principle remit we were given was to assist with:
- time management (so Rachel did not have to work late evenings and weekends)
- delegation of responsibilities to staff (to allow Rachel to further develop her business)
- introduction of client documentation, Policies & Procedures and checklists (so any member of staff could pick up a file and do the work)
To date, this program has been very successful; all client files are now proceduralised with checklists and timetables set for each client. Rachel has found much more time in her weekly schedule to start thinking about the future, marketing strategies and where the new dollars are going to come from and to date, Rachel has many more weekends to enjoy with family and friends than she had in the past.
Before deciding to undertake any sort of mentoring program for yourself, there are a couple of factors that you must consider seriously:
- You will only get out of a mentoring program what you are prepared to put in. A typical mentoring call will leave you with a number of tasks to complete within a given time-frame. If you are not prepared to find the time (often, at the beginning of the process, this means “extra” time), nothing will improve.
- Things will not happen overnight. Any new measures you put in place to improve the way your business operates will only come as a result of hard work and application.
We have attached a “Do I need a Mentor?” Checklist for you to look at and consider. If you feel that you could benefit from some time with us, please complete the attached checklist and send it back. We will contact you to arrange a no obligation one hour session to discuss your requirements and suggest how we may be of help.