Sergii Tymchuk is a young Ukrainian entrepreneur who founded Computools in 2013. This small software development company managed to turn into a global business player in less than a decade, and furthermore, it continues to grow, expanding to multiple markets across the globe.
Today, Computools is home to over 200 specialists and professionals that jointly deliver custom software solution services and help businesses across the world embark on digital transformation. Managing such a huge pool of talents is not easy, but Sergii has developed his own strategy for maintaining consistent business growth without losing profitability.
We have prepared to talk to him about what underpins his company’s success and how to keep a growing company from poor management, inconsistent operation, or stagnant performance.
Home Business Magazine (HBM): How do you manage to keep your company growing in these uncertain times?
Sergii Tymchuk (ST): “I use what’s called ‘regulation management’. I found out about this management style a long time ago when I was acquiring my certification at IBM. The advantage of regulation management is that you can practice it in a startup or something small, as well as in a large-sized enterprise. So, you can build a good foundation for your company that does not need to be restructured when your business starts scaling up quickly or, on the contrary, when it is facing a temporary decline.”
HBM: Could you give us some more details so that other entrepreneurs can use it too?
ST: “The purpose of regular management is to enable effective control over an organization’s performance from the top down. We all see that today’s market is extremely turbulent and unpredictable. It does not matter whether you run a small or international company, because almost all businesses have already moved online. A company’s success is above all how well you can arrange workflows and business processes.
Regulation management requires splitting your business into several areas or streams. Let’s say, you own an online store. Most likely, you will have to deal with Supply, Marketing, Support, and Delivery. Each of them will be considered a stream that needs relevant specialists within it. By dividing your business activity vertically or horizontally, you set barriers between departments, so your specialists will team up better and get focused on their area of responsibility only. This categorization allows you to lay the foundation on which you will later manage and add business processes.”
HBM: If streams should be separated, how do you maintain integrity in business performance?
ST: “Each stream needs a manager. It has to be someone who possesses relevant expertise and capabilities to organize workflows from scratch. Small companies can assign one person to be responsible for several streams, for instance, Shipping and Delivery. Although streams are isolated from each other, they still have a few common points at which managers can streamline business processes and make all departments integrated with each other.”
HBM: What is the best way to enable effective communication within each stream?
ST: “The number-one rule for effective communication is an ongoing internal connection between all team members. If you want your team to come up with genius ideas, you must provide a suitable environment in which they can do it. They need to be in constant touch with each other. Should one have a suggestion, they should have a chance to discuss it immediately and put it into practice. My recommendation is to start with simple chat apps like Skype, Slack, or Workplace by Facebook, all of which help the team members be united in one place.”
HBM: What other tools would you recommend using for effective team management?
ST: “Along with chat apps, I personally like using Google Data Studio that greatly simplifies the process of data sharing within the team. But you can choose any data visualization tool that allows you to present data in diagrams, mind maps, charts, etc. and has good options for data integration with other apps. Be it project development or employee performance management, data visualization software will be of much use for you each time you have to process high data volumes or make quick decisions when you are faced with uncertainty.”
HBM: What’s the best measure to undertake if you see the company’s performance going bad?
ST: “A team’s work is always a result of the manager’s efforts that they make when explaining team roles in a project. Each team member should have a clear understanding of what he/she has to do. This knowledge will keep them from stepping into an area beyond their expertise as well as let them stay focused on their core tasks during the project development. We arrange 1 to 3 regular meetings a month where experts and teams can discuss the most urgent work-related and/or project-related issues.
However, managers should prepare for these meetings. All managers make up a presentation in which they indicate a strategy to elaborate with the team, comment on the latest changes to business processes, and outline tasks-to-do and immediate objectives. Being on the same page with each other is the key to getting work done on time and in the proper manner.”
HBM: It must be difficult to engage over 200 workers in team sessions and discussions, what’s your secret sauce to it?
ST: “You do not need to have all team members in every meeting to change the way your company functions or implement a new high-level strategy. The main task is to convey your idea to stream managers, and their role will be to decompose this idea into smaller tasks and assign them to relevant specialists.
Another key attribute of meetings is follow-up writing. When someone is absent, we do not have time to get back to our decisions and conclusions and go through them again so that these team members could catch up with everyone. Instead, it is easier to send them a brief follow-up that outlines the key points discussed during the meeting. The use of follow-ups is an excellent way to save time and help all workers be on the same page. Do not forget to provide the link to the presentations so that all managers and team leads can access them whenever they manage processes or make decisions.”
HBM: Is there any other way how businesses can strengthen their competitive edge in the market?
ST: “I strongly believe that shifting part of your business online is a gateway to a better ability to withstand market fluctuations and new opportunities to streamline business processes. If you build your business infrastructure on digital solutions such as cloud services, enterprise software, or PWAs, it creates the potential for further business growth and brings automation to your operations, so you can reduce your operational costs and invest in other aspects of your business that you could not afford before. Similarly, it gives you sort of a safety cushion as you are not limited in your partnerships and collaborations that happen online.
Regular management is not a remedy for everything, but it offers a good strategy for establishing a robust basis for business management, which allows you to keep control over your business performance without losing efficiency and profitability.”
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