Jack and Suzy Welch in this week’s BusinessWeek magazine are asked to give some good measurements of a company’s health.
If you’re running a business … we would say there are three key indicators that really work: employee engagement, customer satisfaction, and cash flow.
You can listen to their podcast at BusinessWeek.
You need to know if your company “message” is getting through to your employees. Do employees view their roles as integral parts of the company machine? Does the employee really feel nurtured? Measuring engagement is more than just asking: “do employees like their cubicles or boss?” Treat employees like partners in your business by asking for their feedback. You’ll be surprised what you may learn.
For your team to succeed, everyone needs to be working towards the same goals. If people don’t understand the company goals or haven’t internalized them, your top brass can talk all they want but won’t see the results they are promising.
Get out of your office and talk to your customers. Don’t let middle men between you and your customers dilute the truth. Talk to your customers directly and get a pulse on their opinion.
Free Cash Flow
Cash gives you flexibility. Accounting manipulations can give you a positive net income on the income statement. However, if you’re not creating free cash flow, your business will run into some trouble. Successful businesses consistently generate free cash flow. With this money, you can invest back into the company, make acquisitions, or return some to shareholders. Without cash, you’ll find yourself exhausting your savings and digging a bigger hole of debt.