The process of building and growing a new company is thrilling, but it’s important not to get caught up in the rush of it all. Turning an idea into a viable commercial operation requires thought, consideration, and careful planning.

When it comes to establishing a new business, one of the first hurdles to overcome is setting up workflows. Knowing who is going to deal with what tasks is absolutely key, and only through well-designed workflows can you ensure that people know what their responsibilities are. 

Every new workflow needs a few key nodes in order to reflect the nature of your business — here are the ones you need to start with:

1. Project Manager 
The buck stops with your project manager. During difficult times, they’re the ones with the budgets, schedules, and project plan templates to make sure you can weather any storm. Not only should your workflows feature the project manager as a central figure, but the workflows themselves also need to be developed in conjunction with them.

No matter what type of project a certain workflow is for, it needs to somehow loop in your project manager. PMs need to be fully aware of the status of every workflow to ensure they’re all functioning properly, and designing strong workflows well can help. 

2. Chief Engineer 
If you’re not a tech-literate entrepreneur, it’s sometimes easy to simply leave the engineering team to its own devices. While some larger companies might have self-sufficient software divisions, smaller startups can’t afford to leave their developers in the dark.

Software development workflows are an absolute necessity for new companies, but they can’t simply operate by themselves. You need to work closely with your chief engineer to properly integrate the tech workflows into your other organization-wide workflows. Engineering may seem like a world unto itself, but treating it like one is a mistake your business can’t afford.

3. Head of Product 
There are a number of different product-centric workflows available for businesses to choose from, but not all of them will work for your company. Your head of product will intimately know the key elements your workflow needs to contain, so listen to what she has to say.

Depending on the stage your company is in, your product workflows might need to be geared more toward design, testing, or development. Any of these is fine, but you need your head of product’s input on which will be most useful at any given time. 

4. Human Resources
One of the final internal workflows you need to establish is with your human resources. Your company might be small enough that you either handle all HR yourself or delegate it to various employees. In either case, companies without dedicated HR teams should be more dependent on HR workflows than any others.

Establish understandable and well-defined routines for dealing with any common personnel tasks, such as onboarding or taking time off. Whether you have a head of human resources or not, work closely with your employees when developing these workflows and protocols to ensure they work for everyone. 

5. Salesperson
Once you’ve locked down your internal workflows, it’s time to start developing ones that reach beyond the walls of your office. Structuring sales workflows is a precise task, one that will look vastly different for different sectors. Done correctly, the right workflow can help you generate more leads and close deals faster, almost overnight. 

Your head of sales will have a good understanding of what your potential clientele will look like and what you can do to connect with them. Consult with the person who leads your sales team to develop a workflow that works for them. Sales-focused workflows should focus on both attracting new clients and maintaining existing ones, so look for ways to strike that balance.

6. Lead Marketer
Perhaps more than any other sector of business, marketing workflows are extremely variable. Advertising budgets can change on a dime, and fluctuating customer bases can make it difficult to pin down exactly what lanes your business should be using to self-promote. 

One way around this is by letting your lead marketer automate some of your company’s marketing workflows, ensuring they’re allowed as much time as possible to focus on big-picture projects. It may be difficult to pin down what your marketing should look like, but you can start by implementing successful working strategies.

Starting a new business is never easy, but the right planning can help ease a bit of the burden. By establishing clear and effective workflows early, you can all but guarantee your success later on.