At the Great Game of Business®, one of the most common questions we coaches get tends to go along these lines: “I’d love to open the books and share the numbers with my people, but I’m just not confident they have the education or training to understand them. How can I teach them the financials effectively?” In starting on the path of open-book management, many business and organizational leaders worry about this. Most employees at most companies have not had formal business education, and many may lack much formal education at all. So, it’s not unreasonable to wonder whether most employees will ever be able to understand your finances and business model. When my clients ask a question like this, I like to ask them in return: “Do any of your employees like baseball?”
A mechanic by trade, Tom Bissonnette has been part of the auto body repair business in his hometown of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, since the 1980s. It was in 2000 that the opportunity arose to purchase Parr Auto Body, a company specializing/that specialized in auto collision repairs. While the business proved successful over the next 12 years, Bissonnette saw room for improvement. While he had first come across Jack Stack’s book, The Great Game of Business, back in 1998, it was a newly hired consultant who suggested in 2012 that he implement its best practices in his own business.