At the start of October, our CFO, Peter Ulander, spoke to ZDNet about finding new key performance indicators (KPIs) to measure success.
Alongside trusting in the numbers and keeping focus on the growth of monthly recurring revenue, he told them that it’s financial transparency and getting every employee to understand their importance to the key drivers for the business which lead to success.
At Quinyx we try to take a more modern approach, pioneered not just by Peter Ulander but by all of our team, to managing our business. And this approach, while developed for a SaaS (‘software as a service’) company is equally applicable across different industries.
Through an innovative, open and transparent approach to KPIs and finance, we are trying to create a culture where every employee in our team knows and understands their role and how it contributes to the success of the business on an individual and team level.
Here’s how we did it…
Rule 1 – Have the confidence to share your numbers
When it comes to planning the growth and success of your business don’t become trapped by tradition or the ways a business ‘should’ be managed.
It’s no secret that many startups will be looking at a balance sheet displaying a loss in the early years of the business. Don’t be afraid of this. Have confidence that this forms part of the plan and is essential for the growing profits you’ll see as the business matures. Share the numbers with your staff, be open with them and demonstrate it’s not a risk but a means to an end.
The more your employees understand the journey they’re buying into, the more likely they are to contribute to that journey’s ultimate success.
Rule 2 – Establish a common understanding
It’s through this understanding that true strength and unity of purpose lies. Each department plays their role in business growth and each employee has their own role in that department. What we often lose sight of is how the connections across departments help us deliver a better product to our customers.
Create synergy between teams in order to facilitate a greater collective understanding. This means that ideas from across the company are always given the space to be heard and listened too. For instance, the product development team can feed ideas into the sales and marketing team when it comes to pricing packaging. The important aspect is realising, while teams specialise in certain areas, their ideas are welcomed across all areas of the business.
At Quinyx, we display the KPIs for each part of the business for everyone to see. This helps create the understanding of how everything’s connected and how each employee can influence overall success.
Rule 3 – Empower employees
In doing this, we empower our employees and allow them to take full accountability and responsibility for their roles.
Through their understanding of the business drivers and environment they are able to ask themselves, “What can I do to lift the bar?” They are also then given the autonomy to deliver on this. Businesses live or die by the quality of their product yet it is the passion of their employees who ensure the effect delivery of the product on all fronts.
When there is a culture of transparency, it makes it much easier to have positive and passionate employees.Furthermore, it creates an environment where trust can grow and flourish. Establishing trust between all areas of the business and then building upon removes elements of doubt and allows performance levels to soar.
Rule 4 – Establish the right driver
Once you get your business drivers right and get your employees to buy into them then everyone has a common ground to work from. The KPIs are a visual representation of the drivers and for us that is everything from the time taken to answer a support call to the number of leads generated per month.
Two very different areas of the business each of which carry their own fundamental importance. In seeing this, it allows each employee to assert their influence in the right direction. Get the drivers right, deliver on the KPIs and success will take care of itself.
We’re all about relationships at Quinyx; a good relationship is essential for the best work. We work with our clients to understand their needs, their desires and their goals…and then we help them fulfill them.