While these are all correct in their own right, and can all be seen on your balance sheet to verify that they are in fact an asset, none of them is the ‘best’ asset you have in your business.
So what is the best asset?
The best asset you have won't be found on your balance sheet and it doesn't depreciate in value. In fact, if managed well, the best asset in your business will appreciate in value. We are of course talking about your staff and the people/suppliers around you who all help contribute towards your business.
By focusing on developing these ‘assets’, they will over time add more and more value to your business, and also make it far easier to manage.
How can I develop these 'assets'?
- Start by taking the time to define your goals and the direction you want for the business. If you have clarity on where you are headed, you will also be clearer about what you need to do to get there.
- Share your goals and direction with your team. Most people want to feel that they are part of a wider group and are contributing to something greater than themselves. By sharing your goals and direction you are giving your staff the opportunity to get involved.
- Put in the time and effort to train your staff. To do this well, you need to understand what you need from them. Then understand what motivates them, and what are their strengths. This will help with managing staff. On jobs or projects that suit them, they will require less supervision. On jobs where they lack skills, you will need to pay more attention to training and coaching (and letting them learn by making mistakes).
I have met with established companies that have healthy balance sheets but have many low value and neglected 'assets' within the business. I have also met with new companies that are cash poor, but focused on developing their staff into high value assets. I know which type of company I believe will thrive in the future.