How Using This Org Chart Template Can Help You Reach Your Goal of $1 Million
Looking for an organizational chart template for your small business? I’ve got you covered… but before you download your org chart template, let me tell you a bit about how creating an org chart can not only help you get a great handle on, where your are right now, but it can also be used as a powerful tool to help grow your business to where you want it to be.
First, let’s talk about why it’s important to create an organization chart, even if you only have a handful of employees.
When I work with my clients, they often say, “But Jaime, what’s the point? I’m just going to fill in my own name on about 90 percent of those functional duties and boxes on that chart! I don’t need to write it down to know who’s responsible for what.”
That’s exactly the point — at least part of it. 🙂
I ask all of my clients to create an org chart that represents their current organizational structure for several reasons. First, I want you to see how many different hats you’re wearing — and how many different roles your team members are filling, too. When you’re faced with a black-and-white representation of your current business, it’s hard to argue that you can continue to be the buyer, HR manager, main salesperson, accountant, and CEO… If you want your organization to grow. By laying it all out there, you have an undeniable view of reality.
But that’s not all. Second to a business plan, a business organizational chart is one of the most useful tools to drive your business success and growth. By creating a business hierarchy chart (using our free small business org chart template, of course), you’ll also:
- Clarify your business responsibilities
- Give you a great view of all the critical elements of a viable business (and see how well you’re addressing each one)
- Make you start thinking in concrete terms about your future organization
- Help streamline communication between your team members
Convinced that this is something you should spend some time on? Great! Let’s dive in…
An Org Chart Can Help You Optimize Where You Are Right Now
It’s so critical that you know what your current organization looks like now, so you can know what steps to take to get to the revenue where you want to be in 3-5 years.. You need to know where you are right now, who’s doing what, and where the gaps are. You need to know whose job it is to answer the phones, pay the bills, follow up on contracts, ensure that customers and clients are happy. If one person isn’t assigned to “own” that role, things are going to fall through the cracks.
Even if you have no intention of ever growing (which I sincerely doubt, because I know you have big goals!), going through the process of downloading and completing the free small business org chart template will clarify your current situation.
In sum, the organization chart is the visual representation of your business’ strategy, how it operates on a day-to-day basis.
So here’s how to create your small business organization chart to represent where your business is right now:
1. Download the free organization chart template.
2. Fill in the boxes with the appropriate functional responsibility (click here for a common list of functions).
3. Fill in the person who owns each responsibility.
- For the first draft of this chart, make it descriptive rather than prescriptive. In other words, avoid the temptation to practice revisionist history and describe things as you wish they’d be; instead, get real, even if it’s a tad embarrassing that you don’t have anyone assigned to head up customer service. We WANT to reveal those limitations!
- Each employee should report to one (and only one) manager. If you try to “split” an employee among two or more managers, get ready for turf wars.
- See the bottom of this post for a few examples from me and some of my millionaires.
- It’s okay to have empty boxes on your chart. If there’s no one currently charged with certain responsibilities, it’s better to know that so you can address it!
- If you have current team members/employees, you may want to involve them in the process. It will be a reality check to hear how they see the organizational structure, compared to your perception. It will also give them a stake in the process. Says millionaire Rick Day, “It brings the team together to where they feel included and they feel like, ‘Gosh, I really had some input into that org chart so I can buy into that. I’m part of that. I like that. I helped create that.’”
Once you’ve got your current org chart created, don’t stop there! The next step is to “futurecast” your business. Let me explain…
An Org Chart Can Help You Get Where You Want to Go
Once they’ve completed the org chart that represents their current business, I ask my clients to think about what they want their business to look like in five years. That includes answering questions like:
- Do you want to continue to hold an everyday role in your business, or are you working yourself out of the business and into the role of “owner?” (There’s no “owner” box on the org chart!)
- Are you planning to sell your business? When?
- What kind of revenue will you be generating five years from now?
- What revenue streams will you have?
- What kind of team do you need to support that revenue?
Once you know where you want to be, you can create a second version of your organizational chart — this one that represents your small business five years in the future. This second, “futurecasted” org chart can serve as a planning document for you.
Here’s how to create your small business organization chart to represent where you want your business to go:
1. Download the free org chart template.
2. Fill in the boxes with the appropriate functional responsibility for your futurecasted business.
3. Fill in the person who owns each responsibility (if you know). Don’t hesitate to get your name OUT of as many boxes as possible — especially if you plan on moving to that owner’s role!
- This is your chance to design your ideal organization — but remember, keep it lean. A team will likely represent your largest expense/investment of resources, so don’t add five more support team members if they’re not absolutely necessary.
- Go into this exercise knowing that things will change — that’s totally okay, and to be expected.
Once both versions of your org chart are completed, print them both out and hang them up somewhere you’ll see them frequently, with the “now” version on the left, and the future version on the right. Your goal is to think about what you need to get from “A” to “B.”
The first thing that will probably occur to you in examining the difference between the two is that your name is in a lot more boxes on the left, than on the right. That’s a good thing! I want you to be aware every minute of every day how much you’re doing and how much you need to get off your plate.
The natural next question, then, is, who do you hire first? I actually want you to identify the next three hires you need to make over the next year.
Hiring is not a quick process — particularly when you’re looking for “A” players, which are the only ones you should be hiring! want your hiring radar up so you’re constantly on the lookout for your next team member (I’ve published an entire Millionaire Action Guide for Hiring to walk you through the hiring and onboarding process. You can download your free copy here.)
Your Millionaire Action Steps
Now you can see why one version of your small business org chart is not enough — instead, use the two as described here as a powerful part of your future planning. You’ll not only see how to optimize your organization today, you’ll have a jumpstart on your million-dollar (or more!) business a few years out.
Before I let you go, I want to give you some action items that will put you on your path to a million (and beyond):
1. Download your free org chart template.
- Current Org Chart Template in Keynote
- Current Org Chart Template in Power Point
- Future Org Chart Template in Keynote
- Future Org Chart Template in Power Point
2. Print two copies and fill them in according to the guidelines in this post.
3. Let me know in the comments below if you have any questions!
I can’t wait to hear what “Aha!” discoveries you make by going through this exercise.
Examples of Org Charts
Every business is different. If you are manufacturing a physical product, for example, you’re likely going to need warehouse staff, shipping & receiving, etc. — all things that those in the service business or digital products won’t need.
There are different types of organization charts, too. I ask my clients to create what is known as a hierarchical org chart — a more traditional model for companies that will give you a great foundation from which to scale.
If you look around, you may also see flat organization charts (for a team-based structure), matrix org charts (sometimes used to describe product line-driven organizations) and even bottom-up org charts (see the video from my friend Brad below!).
The important thing to remember is to KEEP IT SIMPLE. As your organization evolves and grows, your small business org chart will evolve and grow, too. You may find another structure fits better – and that’s fine! But for now, stick with what’s easy and familiar.
Here’s an example of my org chart with the “A” and “B” versions on one page. You can see where I labeled things “eventually…” 🙂
Here’s a sample org chart that was created in Excel. It lays the groundwork for the future because it clearly shows the functions of each role – even though the same name is entered in every box (for now, at least)!
Brad Martineau of SixthDivision recorded this video to show his unique “upside-down” take on their org chart: https://sixth.wistia.com/medias/xm1q8pg8xa
Here’s another sample org chart that clearly shows reporting relationships.
We’ve prepped organization chart templates in a few different formats for you:
- Current Small Business Org Chart Template (Keynote)
- Current Small Business Org Chart Template (Powerpoint)
- Future Small Business Org Chart Template (Keynote)
- Future Small Business Org Chart Template (Powerpoint)
You can create your org chart in a number of different software programs, including:
Want more info on types of org charts, as well as typical boxes on org charts? Check out this article from TheBalance.com:
Hi I’m Jaime. Each and every week I bring you the top business advice from the people who know best.Learn More