No company could survive if they constantly missed deadlines, didn’t pay bills, had more outgoings than incomings, had staff that constantly yelled at each other, no filing system, no records. Can you imagine the picture? The company would fail for sure. It would be extremely stressful to work there and for the owners the burden would be unbearable.
Managing your home is no different to managing a company. Think of your home as your family company. If you were the CEO then all of your actions would be centred towards the betterment of your company, not any other company. Your company would come first.
How is your company running at present ? How is the monthly budget looking. Do you even know how you went this last month ? Do you know how you went this past year ? What are your filing systems like ? Can you put your hand on a piece of paper in under 30 seconds? Can you locate your tax summary for 2006 or your child’s immunisation records? How about a manufacturer’s warranty card or the insurance papers for the house ?
Does the company run smoothly? Are there standard operating procedures? Does each company member know what their job is ? Are tasks being performed or are deadlines being missed.
Is your company solvent? That is, are you financially viable ? Is your company going down the gurgler – is it falling behind year after year? Are the outgoings each month more than the incomings?
Who cleans the offices? What recognition does the caterer receive? When is the next board meeting and what is on the agenda?
Your family is more important than any other company in the world. Where do you priorities lie ? Do you give more to your workplace than your own home ? I am sure that you have heard the saying 'on your deathbed, no-one wishes they spent more time at the office'.
Here are some points to improve your family company.
1. Start a good filing system: even if you can't tackle the back log, from now on file every piece of paper that needs to be kept in a place where you or anyone else can find it in under 30 seconds.
2. Have a system for house cleaning and management. Develop a basic weekly plan. Break up tasks so you don't spend your weekends doing housework or washing and ironing. Remember, there are many jobs that fit into the 'stitch in time saves nine' category.
3. Grow some of your own food: Start with some potted herbs and move to planter boxes with a few vegies and then to garden beds. Growing food is economically sensible for a family, it is a fantastic activity to get children involved with and gives a tremendous sense of satisfaction that cannot be reproduced by any 'shopping activities'.
4. Finally take charge of your finances. If you are 'blocking' the truth, it is time to face your financial facts! You can't do anything about the problem unless you identify it and take charge! Work out where you are now. Look at my 'stop think do' programme on the left hand side for more tips. Taking charge can be extremely empowering.
5. Work on your logistics: Stop rushing around. Plan Plan Plan to alleviate chaos and bring peace to your household. Look at what you need next week or next month and do it now so you are not rushing around at the very last minute making everyone stressed. Group errands, minimise outside commitments and prioritise your home and family as Number One.
6. Work on your Family Relationships: If a company has disharmony in the workplace, they would call in an expert and do some personal development and team building exercises to improve workplace relations. Every company knows that when staff are happy and harmonious productivity goes up and staff turn over comes down. People are happy to come to work. Invest some time into improving your family relationships. Spend time together, schedule activities and outings. Have a family movie night where you make home made pizzas beforehand - each member of the house can contribute like a production line. Even a two year old can sprinkle mushrooms! Play a board game without the TV on or play a game in the yard or park. You will be surprised how it slowly changes thing if you invest the time.
7. Have a family meeting regularly. Kids love this, no matter what their age is. At the family meeting you can plan holidays, discuss behavioural expectations, talk about pocket money, discuss job allocations, give recognition for jobs well done. This is something you have to try - especially if you have children. They thrive on this sense of contribution they feel. When we first did this it was a little 'tongue in cheek' for me but once we got going I saw how fabulous it is. Now there is excitement when we announce a family meeting, or if things go off the rails wit behaviour, jobs etc we say 'I think we better call a family meeting' In our VERY serious voice LOL.
Try these steps and let me know your thoughts. Afterall, our family company is the best one to work for !