#Immediacy on speech making

As a general rule, it is not a good idea for a ...

As a general rule, it is not a good idea for a small manufacturing business to have more than one location.

It puts more strain on the owner and supervisory staff that can't be in two places at once. It puts up the note for rates, lighting and heating, and you may need to have an office and store at each location.

But you needn't take my word for it do your own homework. Unless there is a 'very strong case for doubling up, you should move the lot to a new location especially if you can get financial assistance to do so. Distribution capacity I am assuming in this section that your business is not in motor transport; if it is, you should have enough expertise within the business to cope with capacity problems. We are assuming that you have another sort of business wholesaling, retailing, manufacturing, etch with a distribution which seems unable to cope with its share of the workload.

Drivers work without supervision most of the time and it seems to be almost universal that, over a period of time, cosy little habits creep in and become an established part of their routine.

Therefore some improvement in driving productivity is probably attainable in theory, but whether this is enough to solve your problem remains to be seen.

Whether it can be achieved in practice is also another matter. This last point may be connected with how you conduct this study, which will presumably be in keeping with the way you run your business. If you run it in a highly disciplined, authoritarian manner, you will obtain the figures needed, analyse them and issue new instructions.

If you run the business with a high degree of staff involvement, you will bring them into the study, get their ideas and jointly discuss what can be done. Both methods can be successful, depending on the kind of business you run and the kind of person you are. To find out where vehicle utilization can be improved, you need to keep a detailed record, of each vehicle for a period of, say, 'four weeks.

The records for each vehicle are then summarized under the following headings, listing time and percentage of total time for each: Loading time Are there any signs of inadequate loading methods, congestion at loading points, delays during loading?; Unloading time at customers. Are there any signs of inadequate unloading methods, congestion at unloading points, delays through paperwork, poor discipline of customer staff?; Driving What is the average driving speed over the four weeks?; Authorized breaks Do you have fixed times for these?; Unauthorized breaks This figure may be difficult to obtain; Breakdowns on the road Total time from first breaking down to arriving at garage; Servicing and repairs Time spent working on vehicle. The above analysis should highlight where there are opportunities to make better use of your vehicles. What it does not show, however, is whether you can improve your vehicle routing, i.e.

the daily plan of where each vehicle should go. In many businesses ...

the daily plan of where each vehicle should go. In many businesses this is made up, not by the drivers, but by someone in the office who may or may not have any driving exper... read more

In such a labour-intensive setting, it might seem that the only way ...

In such a labour-intensive setting, it might seem that the only way to increase capacity is to increase staff.

This is often true but not entirely so. Ther... read more

Another obstacle is fear. The assistant may become so good at the ...

Another obstacle is fear.

The assistant may become so good at the job that he gets a better job with your competitor or even starts his own business