Turn ambition into achievement

Venturn 6 key tips for an Operational Turnaround.

Operational Turnaround is about achieving more for less.

It concentrates on fixing the underlying business issues that got you into the mess in the first place, and this in turn increases profits.

Our 6 Key tips for an Operational Turnaround are,

  • 1. Experience
    Things get tough in Turnarounds, and achieving what can sometimes appear like the impossible can only be done when you’ve got some extra fire power and the benefit of a Company Doctor who’s been there before. Make sure that you buy in this experience and hire an experienced turnaround practitioner (read more here).
  • 2. Lean
    Getting more for less is the basic principle of Lean that is incorporated within its waste reduction techniques. Waste in any business translates directly into losses on the bottom line and so must be minimised. An Operational Turnaround therefore often utilises the basic principles of Lean.
  • 3. Team work
    Getting everybody on the same page and pulling in the same direction is essential and find out where this isn’t happening usually leads to a root cause of a problem (read more here).
  • 4. Common sense
    keeping things simple and focussing on the basics. If you keep it simple, then it’s easier to get everyone to understand it. Remember communication is key and getting your employees, bank and creditors to buy into your Turnaround plan involves keeping things simple.
  • 5. Objective view
    Sometimes the solution to a problem is right in front of you, but Directors and Managers often can’t see it as they are too focussed on day-to-day issues. An additional pair of eyes brings that objective view and gives the opportunity to ask the tough questions and revisit existing practices. Don’t hold back here, every stone must be turned over.
  • 6. Additional resource
    External pressure on cash from banks, lenders, investors or creditors often means that time isn’t on your side. Make sure that you act quickly and save time by getting help from a Turnaround Practitioner who’s been there before. They’ll get you moving in the right direction at least 5x times faster than if you were doing it yourself. You wouldn’t chose a DIY strategy for company law or accounting, so make sure that you get expert help when you really need it
    (read more here).

Operational Turnaround is actually about improving productivity, making systems and processes work better, getting more out of your team, managing projects better and structuring your management team so that you get more out of your people. Essentially it makes people work better together.

It’s not rocket science, but achieving real tangible results is harder than re-engineering the financial structure. Oh and don’t forget, it’s called Turnaround as it’s usually taking place against a background of cash flow problems, creditor pressure, and limits from your banking facility - that’s why call it Operational Turnaround.

Further reading

Stephen Moon, Venturn Ltd. October 2010

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