Saturday, 29 June 2013

Sometimes you need to prune.

Hi friends,
This post is about the need to prune.

In the garden some plants will only develop after a good prune.
In our vineyard - Award winning Richmond Park Vineyard, you needed to prune the Vines 80 to 90 percent, with grapes only forming on new wood.
Roses are related so are similar, fruit trees and other trees and plants all need a prune so they can develop.

If you don't prune, eventually the plant will die.
They die, as they use too much water and other resources needed to keep the plant alive.
Businesses are similar - they can use too many resources to keep too many people on board and need to be continually reviewed.

Business is similar.

At times, the team members working with you need to be reviewed.
The natural position for most people is to not to lay people off, to keep them on as long as you can.
They have families, mortgages and expenses and most business owners feel responsible for them.

However in the role of business owner you need to ensure both

  •  The long term job for as many team members as you can.
  • The long term viability of the business for your families position.

So for the greater good you do need to continually review one of the greatest costs to most businesses.

In one of my past businesses - Park Homes we started of with 5 team members in 2007 , continually grew the business to around 35 full time members in 2009.

We then worked on a major contract that should have increased the need for team members and we increased the number of team members to 50.

Suddenly we had a great opportunity to build the manufactured homes for the Pontville Detention Centre, with our system being the only one able to build them in the time frame, suddenly we had an increase to 70 people and our focus was on the system and opportunities.

We had taken our eye off working on the business and got too excited in working in the business.

The systems were important, we could build a home every 3 days and at a low cost and should have been able to meet the needs of the Tasmanian Community for Affordable Housing, however the Tasmanian Government would not work with us.

In the mean time we had all these extra people to pay wages, superannuation, tax, Payroll tax etc... and while we had a couple great contracts, we did not have the cash reserves to take up these extra costs.

We then focused on trying to get the sales and production to feed the greater cost base, rather than taking the harder path in cutting the number of people.

Then we got into the position that it was going to cost to much to reduce people by Termination and were in a very bad position to go forward.

I did not move in time, and got myself into a bad position.

What I can do is advise you on a range of great things I and my teams have achieved - but also a range of "Learning Opportunities" that I have as well.

The learning opportunities from things that have not gone well are much more strongly ingrained in the knowledge base than just all the good stuff.

I have a range of great experiences, catch many of them at , but also a lot of learning opportunities as well.

Lack of People Pruning was one that created huge problems for the long term viability of my business and the job position of other people working with me.

Learn from my mistakes and get in touch with me at for the skills so you can grow your business - safely.

PS   Some times you do have to prune for your families future, sad for some and needs to be done with compassion, but it needs to be done.

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