Do you consider your business to be successful? Are you making the money you want and do you have the freedom you desire? If not, you may need to take a look at your systems.
Your systems are directly responsible for your business success. When you control your systems, you control your business outcomes.
Many people have tried to systematize their business, and they don’t see positive results because they focus their efforts in the wrong places. I don’t want that to be you. Today, I’m going to share with you three key parts of succesful systematization: mindset, documentation, and team.
First, why systems?
A system consists of any action that is currently happening in your organization, either as planned or as decided by the individuals who do them. A system is simply the way something happens. Your systems produce your results and determine your business success.
If you are not happy with your current results, you can quickly transform outcomes by strategically developing and documenting better systems.
There are systems for marketing, finances, leadership, HR, and operations. There’s even a system for something as simple as answering the phone.
So if systems are happening anyway, why not use them to your advantage?
Start with your mindset
Systems development is a continuous learning process. Embrace this outlook. It’s going to be the first step in shaping your business’s success.
Systematizing your business won’t happen overnight. Often small business owners look for a quick fix because they have pressing problems that need attention right now. So, they push systematization to the side in favour of a more urgent task. Sound familiar?
When we shift our mindset to continuous improvement, we start looking at the big picture. The question changes from “how can I fix this?” to ” how can I stop this from happening again?”
Adjusting your mindset allows you to step back and make strategic decisions.
Document your systems
Document any changes you make to your systems. This way you can easily reference your system, replicate it and build on it.
Systems thinking will free you from the complexities of dealing with ongoing frustrations in your organization.
A documented system is a blueprint for business success.
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Most businesses start small without any form of documentation. A few key individuals hold the operational knowledge. The business owner typically keeps most of this knowledge in their head and is the constant “go-to” person for answers.
Documenting the desired way your company operates will reduce errors, improve customer satisfaction, and ultimately give you greater personal freedom because you won’t have to keep telling everyone what to do.
Your extra investment of time now to create systems will give you the freedom to delegate the task whenever you would like allowing you to step away or choose other work.
The first draft of a system is your starting point. You can’t measure improvement if you don’t know where you started from. An easy way to start documenting a system is to take a pen and write down each step in performing a task as you do the task yourself.
Hand the instructions you have just written to someone else and watch them follow your system to ensure you have not missed anything.
And even if you are happy with how your business operates, you will benefit from documenting these systems so that you can continue to produce these results consistently.
Share your systems with your team
You cannot expect to systematize your business overnight, although you may want to once you see the power of having everything figured out and written down.
The best strategy is to first introduce the idea of systems thinking to your entire team and then work together task by task to fix and document the broken or missing systems that are causing the greatest frustrations.
Getting input from your team on how tasks can best be done is empowering and supports a culture of collaboration and continuous improvement. The Japanese word Kaizen, a business term often used in manufacturing companies, means “improvement” where everyone in the organization is involved in a never-ending effort to make things better.
Additionally documented systems allow you to share your company’s best practices with future team members making training much more effective.
Having documented systems allows you to create consistency and predictability, which makes employees and customers trust your organization. 50 other business experts agree.
Trust is a primary driver of revenue and contributes significantly to positive company culture.
Systems are key to business success
It takes time and effort to fully systematize your company AND it is totally worth it. I know because I systematized my first business, Sommerville Travel. It went so well that I only had to be at the office when I wanted to be, and I was able to sell my business at a time when you couldn’t give a travel agency away.
And now, as a coach, more than 300 small business owners are enjoying being the boss because of the work we have done together. And more recently, I’ve taught our Certified Systems Business Coaches how to work with small business owners so that they too can help you get prosperous and free through a systems thinking lens. We do this because we know that by helping you, it helps everyone in our communities.
What if everything in your company ran smoothly and profitably without you having to be there?
Systems thinking and documentation are the way! The sooner you start the sooner you will be free.
Until next week, enjoy your Entrepreneurial Journey!
Want more help systematizing your business?
Talk to one of our coaches for a FREE 90-min session. Let’s get you on the path to business success!