Bad habits that could be harming business Published January 21, 2016 | By Achim Neumann, President There are actions that business owners and business managers perform that could be affecting their company negatively. However, these habits are hard to recognize, as they and their peers have often accepted them as common practice. Below are five behaviors in the workplace that either add no value to a company, or subtract from it. 1) Taking on too many tasks The startup phase of a business requires an entrepreneur to wear many hats, but as the company grows, attempting to do too much can hurt growth. After hiring employees, look for opportunities to delegate lower value tasks to them, so more important matters can be focused on with the attention they deserve. 2) Monopolizing the decision-making process Another bad habit that many entrepreneurs possess is their desire for complete control over the day to day operations of their company. As a business gets bigger, the amount of decision points increase significantly, causing the speed of work to slow down due to the need for each one to be approved by the founder. Hiring the right employees and training them appropriately will make it easier to offload smaller responsibilities, which will keep work flow moving at an optimal rate. 3) Reacting to problems instead of anticipating them While many successful business owners excel at executing their own tasts, some do so without thinking about the future. This can lead to problems that would have been easily avoided if time had been set aside to anticipate them. Failure to do this can put companies in a sudden defensive posture when they could have been in a position to see trouble coming. The latter situation allows companies to adapt quickly, making it advantageous to plan for these scenarios. 4) Indulging in activities that don’t add value The information age has transformed business, allowing for exponential increases in productivity. It has also introduced opportunities for distraction that never existed a generation ago. The presence of social media and e-mail, while necessary for the completion of certain tasks, makes it easy to get drawn into activities that add no value to the company. By limiting access to these applications to a few times per day, their drag on productive work will be kept to a minimum. 5) Dwelling in fear instead of moving past it Some degree of risk-taking is necessary in business, and along with this reality comes fear. How an entrepreneur deals with this emotion plays a large part in determining their success in the long term. If they dwell in it, the decision paralysis that results will reduce productivity significantly. If they examine the root of their fear and act appropriately, they will be able to carry on with what needs to be done to grow their business in spite of the risks involved.