MARK LODGE: Are you a chief operations officer? Part 2

MARK LODGE: Are you a chief operations officer? Part 2

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Mark Lodge

Are you a chief operations officer? Part 2

Blogger: Mark Lodge, CEO, RealSave

Welcome to our second instalment. In our first blog we discussed what your role is as a chief operations officer (COO). The title 'COO' is very American; if you are the general manager or perhaps a partner, or if you are the hub of the wheel, you are in charge of operations. So for practicality I will continue with the Americanism.

In our last article we got some insight from Glenn Cream from Ray White Surfers Paradise Group. I would like to follow that article up with some practical applications that can be introduced into your business.

As the COO, you are faced with the juggling act of pushing forward with the vision of the CEO and tempering that with achievable goals that are financially viable, working closely with the chief financial officer. But before you do anything, are you sure of the position of your business in its life cycle?

At the moment (in general) the real estate industry is bubbling along nicely, prices are rising, commissions are up and there are plenty of buyers; vacancy rates are down and the property management team keeps cash flow up. The question is, 'Where to from here?' Are you in startup mode, trying to cash in on the recent upswing? Are you in a payback part of the business, good income and good growth? Or are things dull, unenergised just another day at the office, does it feel like you are stuck in a brick wall?

COO2 diagram

Setting forward plans and having confidence to implement those requires awareness of where your business is at within the stages of its lifecycle. If you’re heading into a brick wall, rethink your investments. And if you’re stuck in a wall right now, make sure you know how to exit smoothly. If you’re not sure where your business is placed right now, I recommend the free online Shirlaws Stages tool at

Now that you know where you are in the cycle, we can start to think strategically and start to manage the owners, the CFO and the line managers.

In next month’s installment we will look at your risk indicators, so that your strategies will grow your business. We'll also look at how remaining focused on revenue creation by outsourcing or engaging specialists for certain rolls will accelerate growth and revenue and contain costs.

Mark Lodge is the CEO of RealSave. The company's objective is to deliver professional procurement services that positively impact on the bottom line of SME, without undue input from the proprietor. Mark is passionate about small businesses and helping owners maximise their potential while saving time and money. 

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