Every manager needs to know what business value is. And even more important for every manager is to have the skills to increase business value.
If we talk in the context of project management – the project manager must increase the business value of his project. If the manager is a CIO or CEO then he must increase the business value of the whole organization.
How to increase the business value of your project or organization
We present you a detailed description of the topics of business value created by BVOP (Business Value-Oriented Principles Ltd.) in 2018. For each topic, we describe details that will give you ideas for your project or organization.
Relationships between business and people
Relationships between business and people – are the basis of the two-way process of identifying the needs of the business environment and exchanging ideas and adding value to it by people. Such interaction is vital for any organization. The constant flow of exchange of links between business and people is needed for the business to present its products or business opportunities, and people (potential customers, employees, stakeholders, society, [Reference: “Roles and stakeholders in project management: Project Manager, Director, Sponsor, Program Director”, https://ossalumni.org/roles-and-stakeholders-in-project-management-project-manager-director-sponsor-program-director/]) to assess the applicability of these products and make recommendations for improvement of certain areas, products, processes or feedback in general. However, the buyer and user of business products (services) are people (consumers, customers) and it must be targeted and tailored to their perceptions and needs. Reference: “Business skills, management, and internal competencies and a sense of success” (by James Miller), https://w-europe.org/business-skills-management-and-internal-competencies-and-a-sense-of-success/
Organizational culture – it makes one organization more successful than another in the long run and is a hallmark of the overall perception and image that an organization has in the business environment and society.
Organizational culture is determined by values, basic views and worldviews, beliefs, and norms, which are formed and transferred from the highest hierarchical position, through management levels, reaching the end employee in the company, in sync with the business goals and strategy of the company. Reference: Managing business organizations and adding business value. An Agile Manager’s Guide to the Theory of BVOP.org by Marta Cooper, 2019, PolicyMatters
ISSN: 1941-8280, Vol. 2, https://www.policymatters.net/managing-business-organizations-and-adding-business-value-an-agile-managers-guide-to-the-theory-of-bvop-org/
Generally speaking, the values of the individual at the top are the defining values for the business. Through it, various mechanisms are applied to unite the team around the organizational goals of the company. Organizational culture makes employees empathize with the principles of leadership and the shared values of the organization. Reference: How to add business value to your business organization’s projects, https://brightonbot.com/how-to-add-business-value-to-your-business-organizations-projects/
When such synchronicity in the thoughts, beliefs, convictions, and principles between management and employees is achieved, each of them will act following the business interests of the organization to achieve good results, high productivity, and demonstrate mutual loyalty. This is what makes organizational culture extremely important for any company. Reference: Examples of business value and business value-added, https://wikipedia-lab.org/examples-of-business-value-and-business-value-added/
Work processes – it is extremely important how the methodology for business process management in each organization is developed and structured. It must contain a logical sequence of stages, steps, prerequisites, methods and techniques, and results applicable in carrying out the processes of providing the offered services and products. Reference: 13 examples of added business value by BVOP.org, https://www.vbprojects.org/13-examples-of-added-business-value-by-bvop-org/
To be understandable and easily assimilated by the employees who follow them, the work processes must be clearly defined – be it through detailed descriptions, differentiation of the different activities, templates, and sample documents.
There should also be clear managers leading the processes, the available channels for communication and access to information should be mentioned, the sequence of steps that should be performed should be described, according to the defined rules of the organization.
Adequate workflow management is key to the more efficient and effective operation of any company.
Human Resources – Every organization needs to realize that people are just as important a resource as capital. The role of Human Resources is to find the right professionals who are a type of investment in the company – just like money. Human resources select the most suitable employees for the desired position, guide the right people in the right roles, work with the management team for the correct application of business tools to provide a suitable environment for the manifestation of their talent.
Human Resources managers also act as business partners. They should have a clear view of the business to implement personnel management strategies and practices to help the company grow and develop. Human resources have an extremely important role in the motivation of staff, mentoring, objective monitoring of the work performance of each team and employee, in particular. The Human Resources Manager also plays the role of a senior management advisor on all issues related to personnel management and assisting management in developing human capital management policies in general.
In addition to protecting business interests, HR professionals must remain a partner of the people in the company. To show concern for the teams and to be a kind of confidant of the employees. Human resources have the difficult task of resolving labor law issues and cases.
It is extremely important for the management to realize the added value of the Human Resources in the company and to use it fully so that they can plan the business needs of the company similarly.
Consumer and customer satisfaction
Consumer and customer satisfaction – One of the main goals of any business, after all, is to offer products and services that satisfy the end-user. If this is the case, then there is a well-developed and manufactured product that relies on the quality and is consistent with the feedback of customers/consumers for whom it is intended.
If customers are satisfied, they will continue to use the services of the company, will seek to buy/use an additional service from it, will recommend its product, and will be loyal customers in general. You need to improve what you offer in the areas that matter most to your customers and increase their engagement.
Organizational culture provokes people to be proactive, to contribute, to share, and to be aware of the business goals of the organization. Organizational culture must be formulated in such a way that employees recognize the values, views, and norms embedded in it, see that management believes in it and respects it, and people will consider it important and follow it intuitively. Reference: “Top tips and trends for managers and modern management in 2022” (by Michael Taylor, 2021), https://managerspost.com/top-tips-and-trends-for-managers/
Modernization and innovation
Modernization and innovation – every business must comply with new technologies and innovative techniques to be competitive and facilitate its activities. Modernization can be realized through automation of the production process, especially on a larger scale. Innovation can be a new idea, a new product, practice, service, production process, or a new way of organization that can significantly contribute to the improvement of the product (good or service) or production process as a whole. There should be a discussion of such ideas at the managerial level and analyzes should be made as to which will be most appropriate.
What is business value and how to increase it in our projects and organization, https://phron.org/what-is-business-value-and-how-to-increase-it-in-our-projects-and-organization/
Adding business value in organizational project management and product development practices, https://www.kievpress.info/adding-business-value-in-organizational-project-management-and-product-development-practices/
Business value in organizations and adding business value to projects and products, https://eduwiki.me/business-value-in-organizations-and-adding-business-value-to-projects-and-products/
Examples of Business value-added for organizations, projects, and products, https://mstsnl.net/examples-of-business-value-added-for-organisations-projects-and-products/
People in the organization
People in the organization show respect for each other and work productively. It is achieved through the observance of business ethics and norms of communication in the work environment, respect for the work, and the opinion of the other.
The number of people leaving the organization is limited to a minimum. To limit turnover, it is first necessary to take feedback from employees on the reasons for their departure and to discuss negative trends and problem areas with senior management. Take into account the financial incentive, the environment and the nature of the projects and the work in general, the distribution of roles and communication in the teams, and all the factors that influence the case.
Conflicts and negative environments are minimized. Communication is key here. Controversial points and issues need to be articulated, analyzed, and a decision made on how they could be eliminated or minimized. It is important to minimize the tension in the team or between employees because people trust that they will be heard and the management will mediate for the positive development of the case.
The image of the organization increases – this is achieved by introducing good practices, high achievements, awards, and prizes for the organization, building and maintaining a positive image through active media, brand recognition in society, and business circles.
Everyone in the organization is constantly improving their personal and professional qualities. A strategy for the continuous improvement of employees must be used. To build an internal environment in which people are stimulated to be proactive, to learn from experience, and to upgrade their knowledge, skills, and competencies that business goals and changing conditions require of them. Training increases the chances for the development of basic skills and the acquisition of new competence so that each person is competitive in the labor market and finds opportunities for the most successful professional realization.
Removing obstacles without management’s support
Team members seek and remove obstacles without waiting for management to do so. The root causes of problems, defects, and obstacles are analyzed, tracked, and removed – it can happen when there is feedback from employees at lower hierarchical levels and it is passed down the chain, along with constructive suggestions and ideas on how to eliminate obstacles. If decision-making to improve the process is at the level of competence at lower levels, it can become a fact without the intervention of management. Reference: https://www.businesspad.org/the-manager-gets-tired-of-making-decisions-all-the-time/
Management and team members work together to optimize processes and speed up development time – to identify the main stages and phases of the process, to see if there is duplication of steps or the decision can be made at the operational level, for example, where waste time in procedural inconsistencies – and if they are eliminated or restructured, better results can be achieved in a shorter time.
Costs are managed and planned carefully. It is extremely important to work out and distribute the company’s budget by item. To plan both in the short and long term, what will be invested in, what will remain unchanged as an expense, and where the budget can be optimized or reduced. Specialists in the field of accounting and finance must lead the process and periodically update the data.
The tools and the environment are constantly improving. A good microclimate must be built in the organization, for which both the management and the employees help. The environment can be improved even by renovating and redesigning the office space, becoming more practical and inspired by colors, equipment, with a more unusual look. Internal initiatives for communication and team building can be created.
Unnecessary documents, processes, and communications are avoided. Process optimization is beneficial for any organization, especially if it has large structures. This is unnecessary work that takes time. There must be a clear distinction between processes and roles to know to which hierarchical level the respective decision belongs and to communicate with it, and not by relaying the information.
Quality standards are followed and implemented without significant loss of time and resources – quality should not be compromised, because this negatively affects consumer opinion. The duration of the process should be assessed and there should be no deviation in unnecessary activities to slow it down. Resources should be predetermined and fixed, but additional ones can be provided in extreme situations.
Fatigue is managed and teams do not spend too much time on trivial tasks. If there is clear planning, distribution of tasks, setting deadlines, the teams will be mobilized to fit in so that they do not have to work overtime and get tired.
The documentation and requirements are created and maintained in an easy and convenient style so that everyone understands them with ease and saves time from unnecessary discussions and misunderstandings. Create directories and servers that are publicly available and upload ready-made templates, forms, and sample documents for employees to use, describing the processes of using these documents, without hampering the administrative departments or mentors in the given company.
Meetings and discussions
Meetings and discussions do not lead to a waste of time and always lead to desired results. Communication is key so that management and teams can “speak the same language”, brainstorm and reap the benefits of generating new ideas and taking the desired course of development.
Product development focuses on the most important goals and needs. The product has a life cycle and different stages of development. The focus should be on the product that the company uses for its own needs and those of consumers, and to develop an approach to assess its potential and develop different business models, including a market approach to its supply.
All results, concepts, and versions of the products are validated with real users, and the risk of an unwanted product is limited. Customer and consumer satisfaction is constantly growing.
The last two examples, in my opinion, are united around the consumer. For a business to be successful, it is necessary to know the behavior of consumers.