As a business owner, have you wished you had someone to help you execute your vision?  Or someone to focus on day-to-day operations?  Perhaps you need a trusted advisor to discuss issues of strategy and execution?  It may be time to consider hiring a fractional COO.

What is a Fractional COO?

A COO, or Chief Operating Officer, works directly with the CEO and focuses on executing the company strategy.  He or she ensures that operations, sales, and administration are aligned to reach the corporate goals.  A fractional COO does this on a part-time basis.  Businesses usually engage them on retainer for a few hours to a few days per month or more based on the organization’s needs.

For companies that can’t afford or don’t yet need a full-time COO, the fractional model gives smaller companies operations experience that is needed but often missing.  They can help ensure that organizations are on the right track and help remove obstacles when they aren’t.

Video conferencing and remote work technologies allow COOs to work virtually with clients regardless of where they are located.

What are the benefits?

A COO tackles the operational aspects of the business and frees up the CEO to do what they do best – grow the business and increase its value.  They can wear many different hats as the needs of the organization change.

Examples of ways that fractional COO may help your business include:

  • Taking the lead on an important project or initiative that other executives don’t have bandwidth to effectively manage
  • Ensuring that the Key Performance Indicators are appropriate for each group to drive the desired behaviors to reach the company’s goals
  • Assessing the operations organization, including people and processes, and making recommendations to improve efficiency, quality, or costs
  • Helping the leadership team develop, execute, and refine the company’s strategic plan

Fractional COOs let you reap the benefits of an operations executive before you make the commitment for, and incur the expense of, a full-time COO.  They help position your organization for sustainable growth.

If you’d like to discuss how a fractional COO can help your business, contact us at or

I was not moving, stuck against a rock and fighting the current.  It took all the effort I had to make progress.  My choices were to figure out a new approach to moving my kayak or getting out and admitting defeat.  I finally leveraged my way into open water.  In that moment, a river, some rapids, and a kayak reinforced the difference between strategy and tactics.

Kayakers know the joy from hitting a set of rapids just right with your boat flowing perfectly through the water and rocks, enjoying the ride, and coming out with your kayak positioned to take on the next challenge.  You also know it takes a lot of work and things don’t always go as planned.

Sometimes you get a little off course.  You underestimated the power of the current.  You didn’t act early enough to put the kayak in position to navigate the rocks or shallow water.

When that happens, you react.  You paddle harder to change direction.  You temporarily get stuck by the current, and it takes strength and willpower to get free.  You may have to get out of the boat and reset.  You may need help from your companions along for the journey.

When you first approach the rapids, you look downstream and assess the path you should take and where you want to end up.  That’s your strategy.  As you begin navigating downstream, you respond to obstacles and successes, moving closer toward your destination.  Those are your tactics.

Business is no different.  You have a path you believe will take you to destination successfully.  As you work toward your goal, wins and obstacles come at you randomly and unexpectedly along the way.  You change your tactics and adjust, keeping your eye on the future. You create a strategy and implement tactics to take you to your goal.  And sometimes you may need to reassess your situation, change your direction, and maybe ask for help.

If you are stuck against the rocks and fighting the current in your business, take a moment and reassess the situation.  How do your tactics need to change?  Would you benefit from help or a new perspective?

Contact OPG if you need help with your strategy and tactics.

A lack of organizational clarity may be the root of many of the issues you face.

Without organizational clarity, you have no accountability.  Team members don’t know what is expected. They don’t know how their performance will be judged. They don’t know what the standard is.

When employees aren’t clear on expectations and outcomes, they operate in the dark.  Fear rather than confidence affects their decisions.

The results are confusion and inefficiency.  Money isn’t spent wisely.  Employees don’t feel the freedom to take care of your customers.  People invest energy creating cover for themselves in the event they are questioned.  Trust is eroded.

Remove doubt and the problems it causes by providing clarity.  Your company will not operate at peak performance until you do.

The question then becomes “how do I create clarity?”

Creating organizational clarity starts with leadership.  Make sure your company vision and values are known.  Create a strategic plan, making sure there are goals and targets that everyone understands.  Every group or department should have known and published key performance indicators so they know if they are doing the right things and doing things right.  Make sure best practices and processes are documented, shared, and enforced.

Clarity doesn’t come without effort.  You may even need outside help to guide you on the journey.  But it is worth it to have a healthy business environment and engaged employees.

If you need help creating clarity in your organization, contact us.