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5 Ways to Professionalize Your Business

5 Ways to Professionalize Your Business

Business & Career | June 21, 2021
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In the very competitive world of business, learn how to professionalize your business with these great tips from Juancho Robles.

A few months ago, a young entrepreneur kept messaging me if he can speak or meet with me on how to go about his dream—to grow his business and eventually list his company in the local Philippine stock exchange. He actually found out about me through a referral from my stepdaughter, who studied in the same school as he. Apparently, he read up my Link in Bio and thought that I could help him. I was intrigued and so, we had a zoom meeting.  

With Passion and Dedication

At the onset of our initial meeting, this young entrepreneur told me that he was inspired by billionaire entrepreneurs like Elon Musk, Mark Zuckerberg, and Jack Ma. He admitted that he could not grow his business quickly without help. And so he was looking for a consultant, business coach, advisor, and mentor rolled into one to help him succeed.

I was actually amazed by this young fellow, who was driven by an intense passion to grow his business at a very young age. He talked about growing his e-commerce drop-ship business. It thrived during the pandemic and he made several millions last year, but our conversation eventually focus on his latest plan—to develop a franchising business that will be supported by an online marketing and business development platform.

And thus, I agreed to help him out. We then started by planning meetings with the ultimate objective of professionalizing the early stages of his business.

5 Ways to Professionalize Your Business

My meetings with this young entrepreneur motivated me to review the various components of professionalizing business operations.

Many years ago, I actually designed a roadmap for several companies who wanted to do an initial public offering (IPO) of their shares. I eventually converted this roadmap into a framework that can be easily understood by business-minded people who want to professionalize their businesses. Many of my consulting engagements focused on one or several components of the framework depending on the priority of the company.

This framework divides professionalizing a business into 5 components, as discussed below:

1. Governance

This is all about implementing an appropriate decision-making structure to ensure that the business runs smoothly and without conflicts. It involves setting up the company’s organizational structure—from establishing levels of authorities to defining the management and board committee charters—as well as the preparing the company’s policies, rules, and regulations (e.g., the company’s corporate governance manual, code of conduct, and manual of operations).

For family-run businesses, establishing a family constitution—which sets the rules and boundaries for family members involved in the business—is also a great idea.

2. Strategy Implementation

Strategy Implementation means conducting annual strategic planning activities, establishing a performance management system (e.g., preparation of performance scorecards for each department and individual employees with specific key performance indicators). Likewise, establishing an action plan monitoring system that tracks the status of strategic action plans is very helpful.

3. Risk Management

This involves integrating risk management into the company’s operations, like practicing Enterprise Risk Management (ERM). Additionally, businesses should be conducting risk assessments before embarking on major projects. Practicing Project Risk Management is one good method to use.

Overall, in layman’s terms, risk management is all about identifying potential problem areas in advance and coming up with a solution to mitigate or resolve the problem before it happens.

4. Business Process Improvement

In Business Process Improvement, you need to focus on improving the effectiveness and efficiency of the company’s operations. A business process is an activity conducted by the company to achieve one or more of its business objectives. For example, cash collections, warehousing and logistics, and sales are business processes.

To improve its business processes, a company should institute continuous improvement activities. This includes implementing a total quality management (TQM) system, conducting bench-marking or comparing the company’s practices against the best practices of other companies within the same industry, improving internal company controls, and establishing capability improvement or training plans for employees. 

Additionally, the company should also institute audit and compliance activities to check and monitor the various business processes. They should also consider establishing a fraud control program or fraud reporting system. Operating a fraud reporting system is actually a mandatory activity for listed companies. The results should then be analyzed and used to further improve the company’s business processes.

5. Wealth Preservation

Wealth preservation refers to corporate structuring. That way, you can ensure control of the business, prepare succession plans for management and key officers to ensure smooth transitions. Additionally, investment planning helps ensure that investments are made to achieve specific investment goals in accordance with specific asset allocation policies.

Similarly, corporate tax planning helps ensure that the company and its affiliates can take advantage of potential tax incentives or allow them to avail themselves of the most efficient tax structure. Estate planning for family businesses is also just as important in the long run.

Overall Takeaway

Professionalizing your business is tough and requires a lot of time and preparation. Thus, I thought of sharing these learnings to provide a road map for aspiring entrepreneurs who may want to elevate their game.

And the benefits are tremendous! Professionalizing your business practices allows your company to provide the best possible products and services, promote integrity and accountability, and reduce conflicts among employees because of clear and transparent policies. It also builds the confidence of your people and re-energizes them to work with a clear view of the objectives of the company.

But more importantly, it can give company leaders the ability to manage the business efficiently and effectively. That way, they can rapidly grow the company and achieve its highest potential. To any business-minded person, this all makes sense! Keep safe everyone!

Photos from Unsplash.com

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Juancho is the Chairman of Golden Falcon Advisory Services, Inc., an investment and financial management firm that provides advisory services to high-net-worth individuals (HNWIs) and business owners. Juancho is also currently the CEO of Chan Robles & Company, the accounting and business consulting arm of the Chan Robles Group.
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