6 Questions You Need to Ask About Growing a Great Company
When it comes to being in an open, peer-driven discussion about running your business, you should always be willing to answer the questions you pose. So when Small Giants Community member Jim Mullaney of Edoc Service (Cincinnati, Ohio), posed six questions about running a business from a Small Giants perspective, we weren’t going to let him get away with not answering those questions about his own work.
Am I building my company to last forever or to flip and sell it?
At Edoc Service we’re focused strictly on company growth, stability, and sustainability for the future. Selling the company is the farthest thing from our minds. Our current CEO may “age out” after 10 years and our strategy is geared to that timeframe.
Do I value my staff for helping to build my company?
Every staff member in the company is treated as a business partner rather than an employee. Our aim is for all staff to grow entrepreneurially and aid company growth accordingly. All employees are on salary and follow empowered roles, from the CEO down.
Am I driven by passion for purpose and principles ahead of cash profits?
Our purpose and principles are posted, well known by all employees, and even linked to our website. We assess all company hires for a cultural fit to our purpose and principles, ahead of their skillset. All key company decisions are made with our purpose and principles in view.
Am I motivated toward partnering with clients and providing service excellence?
Our Scribe division has achieved multiple accolades from our client doctors, who continually communicate their astonishment regarding the accuracy and speed of our transcription service. We recently achieved the 1 million mark for documents processed through our electronic signature platform (eSign) in July. We’ve added another 60,000 since then.
We refuse to become a vendor for any client. Our aim is for a positive impact on client companies. Whenever a prospective client seeks a vendor rather than an active partner, we move on.
Do I insist on the partnerships and deep relationships from my suppliers?
We changed our computer tech support supplier a few years ago when they continued to send “mindless tech zombies” to our office once a month to download server updates. Once a year their sales person would stop by to sell us something. When I asked for help installing a new server, they sent me an email telling me how I should have approached the project. I visited with their CEO to personally deliver the news that we were letting them go and he asked why I hadn’t called him. I asked him why he hadn’t called me, as everyone on his staff knew I was steaming.
Do I trust my staff enough to share financial reporting so they can grow as entrepreneurs?
We have full transparency with our financial reports, including salaries. This forces two critical components of leadership: 1) trust in the staff and 2) stewardship of company resources. In addition, this provides many more eyes on the financials to spot accounting missteps.
Am I a “Servant Leader” who can answer yes to this as well as the questions above?
Yes. Each employee in the company has specific, identified roles and we each fall under the direction of that role’s leader when assisting with a project in their area (including the CEO). We work together as a team and the leadership for the team falls under the direction of the team member whose role responsibility is the one we’re working under.
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