Has this ever happened to you?
EMPLOYEE: We need a new hire for [sales, marketing, accounts, etc]!
YOU: What?! We don’t have the money for that because we JUST hired in a different role!
It begs the question–do your employees know what’s going on with your business? From hiring to projects to new initiatives, how are you managing information access?
Managing Information Access for Your Company
When you first start your company, information access is usually informal and unilateral. You only have a few people you’re working with, and everyone gets access to the same info.
But as your company grows, these conversations will start to take place in portals like Slack, Facebook groups, or your project management software. When someone goes on vacation, you still have access to all the information you need.
Once you get to a staff size of 5-15 people, this might stop working as well as it used to. The info is good and useful, but you have to train new employees. So you create a knowledge base in a Wiki or something similar to help you disseminate the information better. There’s a central place where people can catch up and get up to speed.
When you break 20 employees, information starts to get siloed. The leadership group is funneling the information down through meetings and memos. This might work for a little while if there’s only a few silos.
But as you get to 100+ employees, you need to start thinking of information as a heat map. Who needs to know what? What pockets of people need access to what kind of info?
You need to think about how information flows from you as the leader to the people doing the work, whether they’re employees, freelancers, or clients.
The Sales/Marketing Feedback Loop
When it comes to information access, the biggest thing to pay attention to is the feedback loop between sales and marketing. When communication and information flows freely between these two departments, it will make things more efficient and help your business development efforts. Sales can let marketing know about pain points or feedback from prospects, and your marketers can adjust in real time.
But here’s the thing–you don’t have to wait to get bigger to tighten up that loop.
It doesn’t matter how big or small your organization is.
If you have a gap between sales and marketing, as you scale that gap is going to scale along with you. The earlier you can close it, the better.
The Benefits of Improving Your Information Access Process
Listen, I know you’re busy. Figuring out your information access might seem like a low-priority task. But I promise that once you streamline this process, you’re going to see major benefits. Here are just a few:
Make Your Customers Happier
When your employees are empowered with information, they can actually make your customers happier! The faster you can answer a customer or client’s question or concern, the better.
If you have informed, engaged employees with immediate access to the answers they need, you can help customers resolve their issues—fast.
Make Your Employees Happier
When you keep your employees in the loop, their energy and commitment to your company goes up. You’re going to see this reflected in the way they turn from employees to brand ambassadors.
When your employees become privy to important information—whether it’s your company’s mission or a client folder—they feel like part of the team. They go from employees to partners.
Here’s an easy equation for you:
Informed employees = better service = happy customers = more profits
If you give your team access to important information in a central spot, customers with a problem won’t have to be passed around like a hot potato until they can find someone in your organization to solve their problem. When everyone is in the loop, you don’t waste time on filling team members in when there’s a service issue.
And because you’re not wasting time trying to find the right person to solve the problem in the first place, your employees can be more productive.
Happy customers and efficient team members can be the key to higher profits!
Empower Your Leaders
You’re not the only leader on your team.
You need your other leaders to have easy access to important data about your business so they can do what they do best.
Whether it’s research and development, marketing strategy, or sales bottlenecks, giving them key info can mean the difference between a well-oiled, innovative company and a disorganized company where processes are too overwhelming to allow for innovation.
How do you organize your information access? Is it working for your team?
If not, no worries. I can help. Let’s chat about it.