Hello everybody. This is Jody Johnson with Coffee with Jody. This is the 57th episode, which is very hard to believe, but nevertheless it is. 

Today I’m going to be covering integrating lean principles into professional services businesses, along with employee engagement and empowerment. For those of you who’ve been watching, your clear we’ve been focusing this year on how the LEAN principles that we learned from Paul Akers early on in the pandemic apply to a professional services businesses. 

We’ve been exploring this and deepening our understanding of it on a daily basis since April. I will tell you that it’s amazing and interesting how the simple invitation of, “Fix What Bugs You” can do in a company along with the idea of constant and never-ending improvement and what that can do for a company. 

Now, as owners, we are always thinking about how we can improve our businesses, but what I’ve found is that engaging the team brings a dimension that I couldn’t have ever imagined. What does it take to get the team empowered and engaged, to embrace these kinds of ideas, especially when it’s unclear, how they will apply in the business?  

The first place to look is driving out fear. Now most business owners are not deliberately and consciously trying to make their team members fearful; however let me share a statement that one of the clients I’ve worked with made recently and see what you think of what he said. 

“That was really good work. And you know, I’m never satisfied. So I wish we would have done this.” There was a collective sigh in the room. The team had been working really hard and what they were left with was, no matter what, it’s never good enough, and you’re never good enough. 

When people feel unappreciated and afraid, they shut down, they withhold their ideas because they don’t want to be made fun of or told that they’re not doing it right or good enough. And they make and hide mistakes. All of which is contrary to LEAN principles. In a lean environment, regardless of your industry, you want to have mistakes, things that don’t work, things that are bottlenecks or slowed down to be brought to the surface.  

As a matter of fact Alan Mulally says, these are the gems, they’re the things that allow us to make the improvements we need and to want to be making in our business. Yet when people are afraid that doesn’t happen 

We’ve been very focused in our team on these constant and never-ending improvements and LEAN principles, as I said, all the balance of the year since the pandemic started.  

As we go into the new year I’ll be focusing on these ideas and how they apply particularly to professional services businesses, because so many of our businesses are intellectual and thinking types of businesses. So I’ll be sharing them with you.  

As business owners and leaders, where there is for us to do is to look at how we can empower and engage our teams so that they contribute and are happier. And you know, that happy, engaged, and empowered people have your business be a butterfly garden that attracts clients, customers, and team members to your business.

That’s it for today. If you enjoyed this video please like it, share it, subscribe, and follow. Bye for now. 

About the author,

With 14 years of experience in working with small and medium sized businesses to help them grow, Doug is committed to seeing business owners thrive. Business coaching is what drives Doug.

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