For the small business owner and entrepreneur, there will probably come a time when you need to think about delegating. You’ll get busy, then you’ll become successful (if you aren’t already), and you’ll get even busier. Of course, you’ll be needing a personal assistant, eventually, to handle incoming email, phone enquiries, shipping and payment issues. Maybe you’ll outsource the comment and community management on your blog, maybe it’ll be someone handling your twitter responses.
A Workload Shared is a Workload Halved
No matter what the reason, you’ll need to start sharing your knowledge and processes with your staff. When we first hire someone they, ideally, come with the skill set we were after; and so we expect them to be able to know a certain amount already. But inside our own minds is all the assumed knowledge we already have of how our business works and what our customers need. Trust me, your new staff will be asking you questions, interrupting your mojo, and then asking the same question a few weeks later when that thing happens again.
How One Man Built His Company’s Knowledge Base
- Gather everybody around.
- Answer the question, and explain the philosophy.
- Make sure everyone understands the thought process.
- Ask one person to write it in the manual.
- Let them know they can decide this without me next time.
Derek goes on to say “after two months of this, there were no more questions.”
Creating the manual, or knowledge base, for your business is an investment of time that pays off big with rewards in efficiency and reputation. Imagine a staff who can instantly handle any enquiry just by searching the knowledge base for the answer.