One aspect of our training at The Blue Collar Success Group focuses on the three foundational areas of your business that, when in place, will all but guarantee your best chance at success.  The three essentials I refer to are scorecards, processes and organizational charts. What makes these three components so crucial? Because without them, there is no clarity, no motivation and no accountability for you or your team. There is also no clear, scalable path forward for your business.

I’d like to focus this month on the most fundamental of the three, and that is org charts.

At a recent Blue Collar event (Acceleration Days Workshop), I had a conversation with one of our members who was in the military at the same time I was. His name was Mike, and he shared that what he learned in the military about organizational structure really helped him when we were workshopping about org charts.

His sentiment was, “Right person for the right job at the right time — wrapped with the right training — and you have a recipe for success.” This spoke to me as former military and reinforced that you don’t have to be a "drill sergeant" to have people understand their roles and responsibilities. It’s so simple, so easy and so defining, yet so few companies bother to do them.

At this point you may be thinking, “Okay, but what about those who do have org charts? Is their business instantly on the path to success because they threw together an org chart?” The answer is no, not if no one implemented it.

I was on a group coaching call the other day and you could feel the tension in the Zoom room. During the call, we uncovered that one of the leaders I was coaching was deeply frustrated because the structure of his org chart wasn't being “trained” to his team, and, in turn, not followed effectively. His exasperation centered on the chaos of team members who would inadvertently cross over into other roles and how difficult that made it to maintain aligned accountability. I can tell you also, that the sense of frustration was not just his, but his front-line team’s as well.

So that brings me to the question — does your company have an org chart, and has it been shared and “trained” to all members of the team? If you answered “no” to any aspect of that question, please read on.

It may seem like just a piece of paper but think of an org chart as your game plan. It’s how you make sure everyone knows what they’re supposed to be doing and who they're supposed to be doing it with. Without it, you’re just throwing people at tasks like spaghetti at a wall, hoping something sticks.

A few functions of the org chart to keep in mind:

Provides clarity of structure: Organizational charts provide a clear visual representation of the company's hierarchy, illustrating reporting relationships, departments and roles. This clarity helps your team understand who they report to, who their colleagues are, and how different parts of the organization fit together. This also helps tremendously with accountability.

Identifying hiring needs: By examining the organizational chart, you can identify areas where additional team members are needed. For example, if you notice a shortage of plumbers in a particular region or a need for administrative support in the office, you can prioritize hiring for those positions.

Spotlights career development: Organizational charts can serve as roadmaps for career advancement. Team members can see potential career paths within the company, identifying opportunities for growth and development. This can be a real help with recruitment, onboarding and retention.

Ensures alignment and coordination: By understanding the organizational chart, your team can better comprehend how their roles contribute to the overall objectives of the company. This alignment fosters coordination between different teams and departments, reducing redundancy and improving efficiency.

Supports cultural understanding: Organizational charts can reflect a company's values, culture and priorities. When the team sees how the organization is structured, they gain insight and transparency into its core principles and how decisions are made.

Customer service excellence: An organizational chart that clearly outlines roles and responsibilities can help ensure that customer inquiries, complaints or service requests are addressed promptly and efficiently, leading to higher levels of customer satisfaction.

Scalability and growth: As home services companies expand or take on larger projects, having a well-defined organizational structure becomes even more critical. Organizational charts provide a framework for scalability, allowing companies to add new teams or departments as needed while maintaining clarity in roles and responsibilities.

Consider the different service models you could run. Some companies have techs sell and do the work; others split these roles into separate sales and service paths. Each model has its own set of requirements and challenges, and your org chart should reflect the model you choose to ensure everyone knows their role.

So let’s stay on scalability and growth for a minute.

Let’s say you decide to add HVAC services, you’ll need people who are on board with that plan. If your current team isn’t ready or willing, you know you have gaps to fill. This clarity comes from laying out your team structure clearly and seeing where the holes are.

Consider the different service models you could run. Some companies have techs sell and do the work; others split these roles into separate sales and service paths. Each model has its own set of requirements and challenges, and your org chart should reflect the model you choose to ensure everyone knows their role.

Practically, this means not getting bogged down by whether someone is a level one or level three technician at the moment. Focus on what each person can contribute and what you need them to contribute. Set up your org chart to reflect this. Think about your revenue goals and how each role contributes to these goals.

If you’re aiming for a mix of sales and service revenue, you might decide that sales will bring in 75% of your revenue and service 25%. Break it down: if you’re targeting $4 million in sales, that’s $3 million from sales and $1 million from service. This breakdown should be reflected in your org chart, with clear roles and revenue targets for each position.

Do you now see the value in this “piece of paper”? Keep in mind that your org chart isn’t set in stone. It’s an agile document that should evolve as your business grows and changes. Today’s technician could be tomorrow’s sales lead. Plan for the future but adapt as you go. As we all know, the better your plan, the smoother your business will run.

Next month we’ll dive into the second foundational component for business success — scorecards!