How Do I Manage Information Access for My Team?

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.

Increase Profits!

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. 

Tell Me!

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.

How To Delegate on the Fly

Most leaders–whether they’re leading a government or leading a company–are delegating on the fly. Things are changing minute by minute, and we all want to be responsive to these changes. But how can you do that without driving your team crazy and getting lost in the chaos?

All you need is a system for delegating that can be established quickly and tightened up later. And I’m going to show you how to do it.

How to Delegate on the Fly

When it comes to delegating tasks on the go, the first thing we need to do is set our employees up for success. Obviously that’s what we all want, but how do we achieve it?

Create a Safe Space

First of all, you need to let them know that it’s ok to fail. Nothing and nobody is perfect, but the fear of failure can still be paralyzing. If you give a team member some quick instructions for a project without any guidelines, they won’t know what to do. Put yourself in their shoes. Tell them–“hey, it’s ok if you make mistakes. That’s ok. Just give it a try.”

Be Transparent

Next, you have to be transparent about where you are with things. Maybe you have a brand new idea that you think is amazing, but you haven’t figured out all the specificites yet. That’s ok! Just be open and honest with your team. A lot of us are flying the plane as we’re building it, so things look really messy. But this is all about partnership. You and your team are in this together. So being transparent with everyone about where a project or idea is, who is supposed to be doing what, and how things have progressed is crucial!

When you’re delegating on the fly, make sure you and your team understand that this does not have to produce a final product right away. You’re giving minimal instructions that are often unclear. That’s ok! If you have them, give your team members some examples or research to get started on. It’s all about lighting the match. You just want to get them started down the right path.

Check-In

Delegating on the fly is all well and good, but these ideas will never come to fruition without a good process in place to check on their status. You can do this with a short check-in. Establish the first milestone–it should be relatively quick and small. Then you can check-in with them early on in the project to make sure they’re on the right path. And if they’re not, you can course-correct quickly. 

Just a quick reminder–when you’re giving out tasks on the fly, either you or your team member has to put it into your project manager. Otherwise it’ll just get lost in the abyss. You have to document them in the right place if you want them to get done.

But you’re busy. So how can you facilitate these check-ins so you actually do them and don’t bottleneck the whole damn project? You set up a review process that is easy and works for you. 

For example, I have my team attach screenshots of deliverables in our project manager. That way, I can review their work and give feedback when I’m in line at the grocery store or have a few minutes between calls. It’s easy and accessible on my phone, so I’m more likely to do it in a timely manner. That keeps everything from getting backed up in the project pipeline.

Initially, this might all be modge-podged together. But this will become part of your feedback loop, and you can adjust the process as you go along. Operations are all about adjusting as you go to make your life simpler and your work better.

Need help navigating operations and workflow with your team? Let’s chat–I bet I can help you delegate projects and boost productivity in no time.

Want to crisis-proof your agency ASAP? Take this 3 minute quiz and get some free resources to keep things on track (even during an international pandemic).

Pricing; How to Do It & Get Rid of It’s Emotional Baggage

Juliana, how do I price myself?

Let’s not talk about breakeven points and operating models (you can call me for that). It’s truly hard to price a new service or an offering, but, we need to get over the emotions that come with it and start putting it out there.

I hate to say it to the ladies, but we are the worst. It’s the whole socialization of humbling values that have been instilled in you since you were a wee one. Guys, you don’t fall too far behind. You are an entrepreneur now, get over it. Own it. Don’t apologize for being “expensive.”

There’s all this emotional clutter that comes with monetizing your services. It’s like you are putting a price on yourself and for service providers, you are. It’s your discipline, your years of study and or practice. The amount of experience and crap you have to put up with to go out into the world and say, “This is how much MY TIME costs.”

A colleague of mine, Lisa Velazques who is a Love doctor, (I love saying that because it’s true) says that individuals either have a good relationship with money or they don’t. It encapsulates every dollar conversation I have. You have to start having a good relationship with your money, with yourself, and start owning your price point.

Juliana, But seriously how do you price your services?

The same you would a product – test the market.

It is the best way to start and in your field there will be a wide range. Your job is to figure out what components make that range, and then, where you fit in it.

For example: lawyers can get paid between 100 – 1200 an hour, and sometimes more.

Gasp. I know, mine charges me by the tenth of an hour. He is absolutely amazing: so, I pay.

ScaleTime’s Pricing Tactics:

  1. Figure out the market you want to cater to ranging from accessible to affluent.
  2. See what your competitors are charging in that market. There will most likely not be too keen to give out pricing to you, but you can always have a friend or associate ask for pricing on competitive services.
  3. Insert yourself in the market and start putting your price point in the hands of potential clients. If there is no pushback, you are probably pricing too low. If there are no buyers, chances are your price is too high for your offering or market.
  4. If you are not comfortable saying your prices, your leads will know, they will smell blood and they will pounce.

Pick a comfortable price point and stick to it.

You are the one that gets to go out into the world and say, “This is how much MY TIME costs.”