(an excerpt from Chapter 3 in Becoming an OBM)
On a day-to-day basis there are many decisions to be made in any online based business: When do we want to send out this promotion? Who is going to fix the typo on our website? Where can we find someone to edit my book? How should I respond to this upset customer? What should our next new product offering be?
Without an OBM, the majority of these decisions fall squarely on the shoulders of business owners. As such, anytime there is a question, their team members will turn to them for the answer. Because most business owners are incredibly busy, this process results in delays and it can also feel like a hassle to have to deal with every little thing.
That’s why our clients want someone who is willing and able to make decisions on their behalf, and not wait to run everything past them first. This doesn’t mean that you will be making ALL decisions for your client, however you can certainly help with a lot of the tactical and operational decisions that come up on a day-to-day basis.
How do you know when you should check with your client before making a decision?
Generally, any decisions about money or strategy should be run by your client. On the other hand, your client will probably be relieved once you take over some of the administrative, operational and customer service decisions. When you first start working with a new client, you will run a lot of things by them, as you get to know each other and build a level of trust that will give you more freedom in making decisions down the road.
You may also want to set some standards and procedures around this. For example, I once worked with a client whose policy was that her team could make a decision on refunds that would be less than $100, but anything over $100 had to be brought to her attention. A “Decision Making Standards” guide can be something that you create for your client, and add to over time as reference for future decisions.