Building better businesses

From start-ups to third generation companies, The Berkana Company’s Ann Elliott helps businesses save money, improve efficiencies, and keep happy customers through professional coaching, training, and leadership development.

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Rotary International
Women Presidents Organization
Toastmasters International

How Structure Is Part of the Vast Success Conspiracy

Most entrepreneurs are structure averse. Why cramp your style? It’s so easy to make it up as you go.  Plus, it’s a lot more exciting. Granted. Rules, systems and structures can feel restrictive. I’ve even known managers who enforce the rules to wield their power. It is counterproductive when your business is there to support the structure and not the other way around. Recently I learned of a small business growing rapidly from $1 million to over $4 million. Three employees could manage the company at $1 million and less. However, the founder recognized the need to introduce some structure in order to sustain and support the business. Her two employees, however, created a lot of resistance. “We don’t want to become a big company. We like it just the way it is.” This spells trouble. It’s expensive to run your business without the appropriate structure. Consider, for example, your company ships a product to customers. Without a standardized way of packing, shipping, and invoicing, the opportunity for mistakes is high. They are guaranteed to happen. Customers who get the wrong item are not happy. If the shipment goes to the wrong address, no one is happy. If you forget to invoice the customer or charge the wrong amount, no one is happy. Unhappy customers leave. Your company loses money.  Your company earns a bad reputation. A simple structure to standardize the way you handle packing, shipping and invoicing, produces consistent, predictable results. If you are not getting the results you want, look at the process first. No process? Develop one. The reason many entrepreneurs do not have structure in their companies...


Ann Elliott helped us redefine our mission and improve our profitability. She accurately and quickly assessed the corporate culture. She helped RMC draw a road map to success. The map I was using prior to The Berkana Company led me in circles! My work is more fun now. Chris Ray

CEO, Receivables Management Corporation

Thanks to you I am more excited about my business than I have been in a long time. You have a way of working with people that never makes them feel like they failed or disappointed you. With your coaching and consulting I have achieved things that I had been putting off for a long time. Until I started working with you, I didn’t have the tools to make these changes. Initially this was like jumping off a cliff for me. Look what we have accomplished! Now I am able to dream of all sorts of possibilities. With gratitude and a new attitude… Debbie O’Farrell

President, Kamis Construction


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