Anything that needs to be done more than once can be captured and turned into a process. Entrepreneurs tend to ignore the value of processes. There are lots of reasons for this (and none of them are good), but that’s a story for another day. Suffice to say, they tend to be focused on the ends, not the means.
Why should you create processes for routine, repeated activities? Processes increase the chance of success. Processes improve profitability. Processes reduce chaos. Processes improve accountability. Read those again before moving on.
Explore and discuss processes with every employee. Make sure they can describe and document the processes they’re asked to adhere to every day. They may not even realize they’re using processes until you have this conversation. Ask them also to uncover processes that are broken or ineffective. Incentivize them to evaluate their activities and to be on the lookout for processes that can be improved to save time and money.
If you end up revising a significant process based on this bottom-up evaluation process, be sure to put a training program/session in place for every person who directly interacts with the newly-defined process – those who lead up to the process, engage in the process, or deal with matters stemming from the process. Too often people only know their job and their own part of a bigger picture, without knowing the “why” behind it – i.e., how it fits within the bigger process. Knowing the “why” tends to drive compliance.
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