Getting Offices to Work Together
Most business owners are starting to realize the benefits of getting their locations to work together, but are finding challenges in implementing it. I have personally seen companies with one production location working overtime and at maximum capacity while a nearby office is sitting idle. There are many reasons for this: technology, internal procedures, and inertia. I believe the primary contributor to this problem is performance measurement. When managers of offices are brought together and their performance is compared their top line and bottom line results are presented. Managers and whole offices are compared to their peers by the performance of their individual store. Many will argue that they have plans where they give some credit for work that is shared, or some credit for the whole company. This is better than not giving credit, but will not maximize cooperation between locations. Most achievement oriented people will put their time and attention behind those things that they are measured on. If you want to promote inter-office cooperation you need to look for different measurements. Some in the industry are starting to figure this out with positive results.