Is Your Print Shop Ready For The Playoffs🏈?

Business Lessons

We are in the heart of football season. The highs and lows of  Sunday afternoons and late Monday nights stir up conversations around the shop. A game of rigorous preparation, well-planned strategies, passion, teamwork and high pressure offer us some very great entertainment, but also business lessons you can apply to your shop. 

Is your team ready for audibles? What about your 2 minute drill. How do you adapt to change when your business is under stress? The winning team has all the right things working, let's take a look at your business.

What is the attitude like in your locker room?

A football team is constantly preparing for battle.

To win, they must all know the playbook. They must all know how to communicate. They must all have a winning attitude.

Do you have weekly huddles with your team? Do you go through strategy for how you will execute jobs perfectly? Do you set goals, create camaraderie and act like a team in your shop? Consider focusing on HR and the importance of creating an HR department in your business.

Get your team excited and bonding. Bring them a surprise lunch, coffee, cake on their birthday, a round of drinks on a Friday and have regular 1-on-1's to empower your team. 

Do you use the width of your football field?

A football field is 100 yards long but also 53.33 yards wide. An offense wants to progress the ball downfield and score touchdowns, but they have to take into account the entire width of the field and expand their vision to work laterally in order to do so.

Your business will start Monday morning with your eyes on the weekend. The goal is to get as much as you can print before the weekend.

Cram all those orders in before customer due dates. Rest, and repeat. Sounds Familiar? 

Next week try to zero in on scheduling, so you can get the most out of your business. Try a swing shift, where employees come in at different times so you can maximize your uptime on your press. 

If you can run your presses for a few more hours each day, and you average X shirts per hour, your profit can skyrocket from the value added. Your rent and utilities are generally fixed so by reducing costs and having a detailed schedule, you can make the most out of your week. 

Every player matters, practice makes perfect!

Yes, the quarterback probably gets special attention, but they often have the most amount of responsibility. Without a great offensive line, running backs, wide receivers and quarterbacks cannot be successful.

Do you identify positions in your shop and develop those positions? It may be a simple position like the pullers, folders and boxers. Don't forget about them! Spend time ensuring they are doing their job with the utmost quality and precision.

Every employee needs 1-on-1 attention. 

BONUS: Have biweekly 1-on-1 meetings with each member of your team. Ask how you can help them do a better job and what concerns they have. 

Did you watch film from last week?

To get serious about winning, you have to be able to look back and be critical of yourself.

When is the last time you sat down took a detailed look at your past orders? What went well? What could you have done better? Was pricing accurate? Was there a specific job that drove you nuts?

Use past orders to develop guidelines for those working with customers so they can take better jobs. If you were flashing two-color pockets that took way too long to print, sit down with your sales team and go through how to down-sell those jobs to make them easier on your business. 

How strong are your special teams?

We all know all the fun happens when special teams are on the field. They spend the least amount of time on the field but get quite a bit of action. This might be your embroidery department, direct to garment printers, promotional products department or any offshoots that are not your main focus.

Spending time with them and treating them like the rest of your business could yield greatly for you. There are fantastic profit centers as auxiliary parts to your business so do not discredit them.  You might find a vacuum here that changes your focus. 

Are you ready for audibles?

The defense shows blitz or goes to man coverage. Your quarterback sees it coming. How do they react? The veteran quarterback knows its coming. They have a book of plays and signals that can adapt in an instant. This unfaded resiliency creates strength and brings a team together.

Your print shop should be the same, ready to adapt to the last minute challenges you will face. No matter how much preparation and strategy you have created in your business, the success of your business is shown when it is under stress.

Do you have a backup plan when your equipment goes down or an employee is unavailable? How about when that rush order comes in that needs to be done for that important customer.

All these unanswered questions are for you to sit down with your team and develop scenarios that can be used for these question marks. 

Where are you on gameday? 

Every team needs a general manager, head coach, offensive coordinator, defensive coordinator, special teams coach, medic... the list goes on. What role do you play in your business?

As an owner, you need to position yourself where you can add the most value. There might be crunch times where you are printing yourself, boxing orders, or even out delivering.

Next time you catch yourself doing a remedial task around the shop, stop and ask yourself if this task is better delegated so that you can focus on the overall success of your shop. 1 job sold is more valuable than 1 job printed, because you can pay an employee a fraction of the profit that you make on that order. 

Every Monday is the start to a new week!

You win some, you lose some. The team travels back to their practice facilities and gets back to work. Do not dwell on the past too much.

While it is important to use the past to strengthen the future of your business, remember that you will have ups and downs. Start fresh each week with a clear mind, an opportunity to be perfect.  Set short, winnable and attainable goals that your entire company can get behind. There are 16 weeks of football and 52 weeks in a year.

Build a winning company!


Next Post: Starting & Optimizing Your Shops' Paid Online Ads

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Printavo ​​is simple shop management software. Whether your shop works with screen printing, embroidery, signage, digital printing, or awards & engraving–we make your complex workflow simpler to manage and understand. Printavo keeps your shop organized by handling scheduling, estimates, quote approvals, workflow, payments, accounting and more. With Printavo, you’ll work smarter–not harder.

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