Questions You Need to Ask to Achieve Leaner Operations in Your Business

Asking these questions can help your business achieve leaner, more effective operations without spending more money or completely reorganizing your business.

• What can you do to use up what you have before you order more?
• Who is most efficient with the standard set of tools or software your team has? Find out so that they can share this knowledge with everyone else.
• What small, low cost steps can you take to dramatically improve your customers’ satisfaction? For example, would emailing them when their product is shipped or emailing assembly instructions when the product arrives help them?
• What individuals are considered subject matter experts and consistently called for questions? Organize knowledge sharing sessions to improve everyone’s productivity.
• Which small changes in your current processes would yield significant ROI?
• What can you do to improve communications within the group?
• What meetings can you eliminate to save everyone time?
• What stakeholders should be added to current meetings so that you do not have to wait for authorization to act? Who can be dropped from current meetings without affecting the team’s productivity?
• Who wants to join a quality circle?
• What services, contracts or licenses are you paying for that are not fully utilized? Determine what can be cut back or dropped to save money.
• What metrics are no longer useful and can be dropped, saving time and money?
• What regular training classes can be shortened or dropped?
• What credentials do your employees actually need, such as food safety certifications, information security credentials or annual legal reviews? Which ones are no longer value added and can be dropped from company job descriptions and professional requirements, saving employees time and money while allowing more people to be considered qualified for job positions?
• How can you better utilize current suppliers and contractors, shifting work or value added services to them for little additional cost?
• What are you throwing away that could be recycled or sold?

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