Are You Getting In The Way Of Your RTO's Success

How an RTO Owner's 'interference' actually create more problems for your team and business
I'm sure many RTO Owners would think they are doing the best they can to ensure the survival and success of their business.

But did you know that unfortunately many actually get in their own way; and instead of letting people help the business, they interfere and ultimately hinder their own bottom line?
Now whilst this blog is targeted at RTO Owners; if you're an RTO CEO or Manager, then I'd also encourage you to read this blog because it may be something you should share with your Owner to help alleviate your frustrations 😊.
FOCUS:  Manage Your PEOPLE
Although this can occur with sole operators, I see it even more apparent when staff are involved.

So I would like to talk directly to those RTO Owners who have employed a CEO or RTO Manager to run their day to day operations.

If this is you, then I would like you to consider these 7 Key Questions

1. Do you go into the office every day?

2. Do you approve every payroll payment?

3. Is there an approved budget for each financial year?

4. Is there a Delegations Register outlining what each position in your RTO can and can't do?

5. Do you have set weekly or monthly meetings with your CEO/RTO Manager?

6. Do you manage staff issues?

7. Have you clearly documented the work you want to do and the work you DON'T want to do?

The reason I ask you to ponder these 7 questions is because these are some of the issues staff talk to me about when explaining how frustrated and hamstrung they feel in their roles.

Now let me share with you why.

1. Do you go into the office every day?

Why and if you do, what is the purpose – to do what tasks?

Are you there to fill in time or are you generating income for the business?

2. Do you approve every payroll payment?

Why because haven't you delegated this authority to either a Finance Manager, or if your business is still quite small, the person (CEO/RTO Manager) you're paying probably a lot of money to run the day the day operations of your business?

3. Is there an approved budget for each financial year?

If yes, then why do you need to see and approve payroll and general expenses?

If no, then why not because how you can't run a simple profitable business without one?

4. Is there a Delegations Register outlining what each position in your business can and can't do?

If yes, then are you letting people manage their own roles and responsibilities in accordance with this Delegations Register; or are you changing the goalposts by 'interfering' (with the best of intentions)?

If no, then how can people know what they can and can't do in their positions if it's not documented?

5. Do you have set weekly or monthly meetings with your CEO/RTO Manager?

If yes, are these high level strategy meetings looking at the overall viability (ie. performance, productivity and profitability) of the business and how it will continue to grow; or are you discussing nitty gritty details that again you are paying someone to deal with so you don't have to?

If no, then how are you ensuring they are on top of their agreed outcomes and KPIs?

6. Do you manage staff issues?

If yes, why because aren't you paying someone to do this for you?

If no, then great if this is being done by someone else? Not great if the answer is no because staff issues are being ignored or dismissed in the hope they will eventually go away.

7. Have you clearly documented the work you want to do and the work you DON'T want to do?

If yes, then are you following this or are you digressing into other functions which you're paying people to do?

If no, then why not because don't you want to build an RTO business where you do the work you love (however much or as little that is) and let other people do the rest?

I realise for some RTO Owners, my comments may be hitting a bit too close to home or may seem a bit harsh.

However, if you CHOOSE to get help and CHOOSE to divert money from your own pocket and instead invest in employing staff, then surely you would want them to have all the resources and tools they need to do the best job they can for you and your RTO business?

Yet unfortunately I see many RTO Owners employing staff in the head honcho role (CEO/RTO Manager) because they 'think' they want to hand over the hassle which can come with managing the daily running of the business.

And this sounds great in theory.

But if the practice is to give someone a role but not the responsibility and the appropriate delegation because you don't want to let go, then what is the point of employing someone to run your business?

You're just setting them (and your RTO) up for failure, stress and frustration.

And that's not fair to you or to them, is it?

What's Next?
So why does this happen?

My belief is too many RTO Owners feel if they are not SEEN in the office every day, if they don't check the little things, if they don't have long chats with their CEO/RTO Manager every day; then they are not a great Owner and Leader.

When in fact the opposite is the case.

Think of the most successful business owners you know or admire?

Maybe Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Arianna Huffington and all of the Australian Shark Tank judges come to mind.

• Do you think they're spending their time checking amounts on a payroll payment to ensure it is correct?

• Do you think they're checking every expense item and questioning 'why have we bought this stationery' etc?

• Do you think they're constantly bothering their staff with questions or lengthy discussions not linked to a specific outcome or decision?

Of course not.

They put in place the required systems as well as conduct rigorous recruitment and induction processes to ensure they not only get the right person to do what's needed; but gain the confidence they can trust the person to follow the documented procedures and systems.

Implementing systems and getting the 'right fit' person enables them to get on with what they're good at – thinking up new ways to deliver great products and services as well as building and maintaining relationships which continue to bring in business ($$$).

And here's my final thought:

There's no point in employing staff to help you run your RTO if you haven't documented what you want them to do (systems) and/or if you won't give them the true delegated responsibility which comes with their position.

If you can't let go in a measured way, it is a waste of time and money in both wages and productivity.

Not only will it frustrate your staff who feel they aren't empowered to do anything which results in performance and organisational culture issues; but in the worse case scenario, you'll lose great staff to your competitors.

So the choice is yours.

Run every component and detail of your business which will mean you won't be freed up to work ON your business and thus stagnate your business growth.


Put in the necessary checks and balances (systems) to minimise risk and ensure financial viability whilst allowing staff to flourish.

Do the latter with the right people who want to help you and your business succeed and wow –watch your RTO goes gangbusters.

Best of luck.

. If you want some help to Boost Your RTO's Productivity, Profitability and Performance, then check out my webinar. 

Dedicated to helping you run a simple profitable RTO business (whilst juggling everything else)!

Author: Tamara Simon

Tamara Simon is Australia's Only Dedicated RTO Business Coach who's driven to making your RTO life easier.

For over twenty-five years, she's been helping timepoor RTO Owners, CEOs and Managers get out of OVERWHELM so they can

- Get back in control and on track

- Grow their business... simply

- Reignite their passion for training

Find out more about Tamara Simon and how to work with her, her signature RTO GROW Training Program,and how she can take your RTO from Overwhelmed to Optimised here:

Want to know the 5 Strategies Essential to Growing Your RTO Business?

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