Are you having trouble with your staff not doing what you want them to do? Unfortunately, it is likely your fault for not having the proper procedures in place for them to follow. For those of you who do have procedures, yet you find they are not followed consistently, then there may be even more missing from your business. There are 9 steps to systemizing your business, and writing procedures is Step 8 of 9! If you truly want systems that your employees are motivated and inspired to follow and improve upon, then you must implement all 9 steps.
Steps 1 & 2 – Vision and Mission
What is your vision for your business, where will you be in 20 years? How do intend to go about achieving your vision? How will you organize, behave, interact with your customers and employees? There are many different versions of what is a Vision and what is a Mission, but I think it all boils down to two things. First of all, what are you trying to accomplish? Second, how do you intend to go about accomplishing it? You must get these concepts on paper and share them with your team, then use them as part of everything you do in your business. If you just put them in a pretty plaque on the wall, they will be meaningless, the butt of jokes, and a complete waste of your time and money.
Step 3 – Culture/Core Values
What is the environment that you are creating for your team and your customers? What are your most important beliefs that you want integrated into every activity in your business? How do you want your team to treat each other, your business, and your customers? Combined with your Vision and Mission, you now have defined the very essence of your business, and every action that takes place should be evaluated against these 3 defining documents.
Step 4 – SMART Goals
Now that your team knows WHY you do what you do, and HOW you expect them to do it, you need to tell them WHAT you are specifically trying to accomplish in the current time period. You need to give them goals to achieve, and they should be SMART – Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Results-Oriented, in a Timeframe. Teams that understand and buy in to what they are trying to achieve in the short-term, with the knowledge of how they fit into the long-term (Vision, Mission) can more easily do the things that need to be done. Eliminate the guesswork of why they are being asked to do things.
Step 5 – Organizational Chart
A simple definition of roles and responsibilities within the organizations management structure.
Step 6 – Position Descriptions
Instead of job descriptions (lists of tasks to perform), Position Descriptions describe the purpose of the position in the organization (how it helps achieve the Vision, Mission and Goals), the key (not all) responsibilities and accountabilities of the position holder, and how success of that position will be measured.
Step 7 – Key Performance Indicators (KPIs)
Every team member should know how they are measured, and every process should have a key measure to know if it is performing its role/task successfully. These KPIs are part of the position description and are tracked and reported on a set schedule. KPI owners are responsible for performing variance analysis of the results, and constantly improving the processes to meet and exceed the KPIs of the position.
Step 8 – Process Documentation
This is the easy part – the steps required to perform each function successfully, which means achieve the desired outcome of the activity in a consistent, quality manner. Each process should be able to relate back to why it exists, which in the end should be to ensure that the Vision, Mission, and Goals are achieved for the benefit of the customers, employees, and owners.
Step 9 – Management Systems
Higher level processes which define how the individual processes are monitored and managed for the successful achievement of the company’s Vision, Mission, and Goals.
Once you have implemented all 9 step, you will truly have a systemized business which can produce repeatable results for all stakeholders. The key is to “Start with the End in Mind”, as Steven Covey taught us in his Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. By following these steps in order, you too can build an effective, fun, and profitable business.