“If you don’t have control in your business, then you are running a charity and not a business”. This was the statement that was made by a friend of mine and he has been quite successful in running multiple businesses and that too profitably. It set me thinking, as to how control is related to business.

Successful business is all about results and not activities. But then being a control freak, you may not allow many activities to go through and will invariably become a bottleneck in the process. Assume that you have three different business units and all the three units report to someone on top who is a control freak and who wants to approve with his eyes and ears open to every dollar that gets spent by each of the business units, then results would be hard to come by. This form of control goes against business.

At the end of the day, all you need to exercise control is on time and money (time after all is money!). Minimize the amount of time spent and maximize the money earned. In other words, greater productivity, greater profits, happier customers and successful business. This is precisely what needs to be controlled and this needs to be coupled with efficient delegation and measuring the result of every spend. Three points to keep in mind would be:

  • Define what you plan to spend (you can’t control what you can’t define)
  • Measure your spends against what you expect to achieve (Every $ spent needs to get you more than a $)
  • Prioritize your spending on what works against what doesn’t

This will result in better business and happier stakeholders.