Do You Have a Clipboard Mindset?

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In his article, 7 Traits of A Leader Worth Following, author Michael Thompson shares classic wisdom he learned from 50-years of leadership notes from his father. My favorite is #4, Ruthlessly seek out blindspots. The use of clipboards in an otherwise digital organization is for me, a clear indicator of a leadership blindspot. I redefined my clipboard metric this week as an organization that uses clipboards to hold spreadsheets. If you find the definition bothersome, or too close for comfort, here's are some reasons why it's time to replace your spreadsheets with better tools.

It the past week I've had conversations with successful business owners who still rely on spreadsheets to run their business. The reasons given include the comfort a familiar tool and the level of trust in seeing raw data. The challenges they represent outweigh their value to the organization. The problems start with the need for manual input. Once you've input all the data, you have to manually review and make sense of it all. Plenty of data, little if any insight. There is a better way and it leads to an increase in profits.

Change Your Mindset, Transform Your Business

 Better tools lead to better outcomes for your organization. Not just any tool, but the right tool. Start by defining the task. Investing time in defining what needs to be done pays dividends by eliminating the need to review the abundance of available digital tools. A refined list of requirements produces a shorter list of candidates. Here are some opportunities for spreadsheet replacement therapy.

Password Vault - A spreadsheet is better than post-it notes framing your screen, but they are not the best tool in your toolbox. Search for Password Vaults for articles and vendors. Their features and security will amaze you.

CRM - Even the simplest of Contact Relationship Management platforms combine the functions of contacts, calendars, and communications. The velocity of digital business places demands on your operation a spreadsheet can't possibly deliver.

Checkin Sheets - Especially if they are printed and clipped to a clipboard. Switching to a CRM displayed on a tablet eliminates retyping, improves accuracy and makes the information available immediately.

Dashboards - Spreadsheets taped to a whiteboard look impressive. They are simply not effective. Consider replacing this obsolete system with a digital dashboard.  

Your Bottom Line

When I work with clients, we start by printing all of their spreadsheets. We work together to find opportunities to eliminate manual effort, data paralysis, and provide business intelligence to increase the velocity of business operations, revenue, and profits.  What effect would it have on your business if you used better tools? 

If you have questions and are open to a conversation about better tools, call Jerry at 904-566-8325.