SYSTEMISE YOUR BUSINESS – what does that even mean?

SYSTEMISE YOUR BUSINESS - what does that even mean?

Too many founders think their business comes ‘alive’ when they make their first dollar. It’s a big moment to celebrate for sure, but your business isn’t alive yet, you’ve just created a puppet. At this stage, you’re pulling all the strings. You’re making all the decisions, meeting all the sales and delivering the products. After that you probably have to go home and night and do the invoicing, stock ordering and be prepared to do it all again tomorrow. This type of business isn’t alive, it has no pulse, can’t make any independent progress or do anything at all unless the owner generates that activity. Without systems you don’t have a business, you are the business. 

 

Systemising and process development is the first step in getting ready to breath life into your business. Capturing the excellence in what you do every day and locking it down into a detailed process allows you to deliver with simplicity and consistency. When you get to a defined moment in the customer journey (website enquiry, product delivery etc) you don’t want to have to think of what to do next? It should be based on the experience in what works the best in that situation and drives conversion and retention. It sounds like common sense, but it’s extraordinary that when the pressure is on and life gets complex that we revert to short cuts which don’t deliver us the results we need. 

 

Simplicity is the king and consistency is the queen. System and process development should take the simplest path which delivers the quality the client cares about. Life is complex enough with the multitude of human interactions with clients, staff, suppliers, contractors, let alone your personal life. Keep your business systems simple and effective to ensure you have the capacity to manage the human complexities as they arise. Once you and your team start following your defined processes, your business is now starting to show the signs of life. A slow pulse starts beating as the activities start to be dictated from within the business itself rather than purely by the owner. 

 

Technology and software platforms have given us the ability to liberate ourselves from being slaves to our own business through automation. Once you have defined the sequence of your systems and processes , the automations should deliver the required tasking to the right person. This is achieved by developing clear pipeline stages across the lines of operations of the business which require distinct action to progress the customer on their journey with the business. These pipeline stages also provide the framework a unique message for the client as the mature in interest and engagement with your business. 

There are a multitude of Customer Relationship Manager (CRM) platforms which allow the ability to not only capture data, run reports and set automated tasks based on events. 

 

Once automations are set to drive activity, the level of ‘independent life’ in the business is starting to grow. At this stage, the owner no longer has to make every decision, but let’s the CRM drive progression through the task automation. The owner still manages to maintain control because the system is built through their experience and should deliver their standards. 

 

This initial level of automation is not the end but the beginning. The constant quest for improvement and learning is continually delivered through refining and tweaking the systems. Now the business owner has been liberated out of the weeds of low value operational activities, they should be looking to monitor the health and performance of the system using data and reporting mechanisms from the CRM. 

 

The reality is systems development and process improvement is all about time. It’s about ensuring that business owners and managers have the capacity to focus on the most important activities to grow the business rather than being consumed in the administration of the day to day.

Need more time? How systemising your business can win you back one day per week back to spend how you choose.

Need more time? How systemising your business can win you back one day per week back to spend how you choose.

As business owners’, there are two things that we all need more of… Time and Money. By focusing on getting time back first, we can then focus on how to get more cash into the business. It sounds easy enough, but how do you actually make it happen?

 

To free up your time, the solution is to ‘Systemise Your Business’ and get yourself out of the way of your own success. Nearly every small business owner you meet will say they have systems, but they’re all in their head. This is the number one reason why business owners do not have enough time. It is impossible to keep track of every client, every sale, every staff member and every task within your head. You want your system to run the business and you monitor the system. So how do we do this?

 

  1. Define the key pipeline stages of your business
  2. Map out the sequence of your business
  3. Allocate responsibility and conduct for each step
  4. Identify metrics based on the performance of each step
  5. Build a procedure or ‘how-to-guide for each critical step. 

 

Once this is completed, it is very simple to incorporate this model into a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) platform. You can then program the CRM to automatically generate tasks for all your team relative to the progress of the client’s journey with you. The best bit of news here is that you are now well on the way to removing yourself from the day to day operations of the business. 

 

If it sounds like hard work, it’s actually rather simple if you approach it in a concise, logical manner. Focus first on the activities which will free the most of your time first. These will nearly always be administrative in nature or revolve around solving a persistent staff or customer relations problem. 

 

Work hard, once.. Instead of being consumed day after day in the spot fires of the daily business, work hard once to develop your standard operating procedures (or how-to-guides) then delegate them. Keep challenging yourself with the mantra ‘Why I am doing this?’ and ‘Is this really the most important thing I need to do?’.

 

If nothing changes, nothing changes. There is light at the end of the tunnel. 

 

A simple way to start is to conduct an audit of how you spend your time. Diarise your daily activities and score these against three categories;

  • How important was this task to the strategic direction of the business?
  • Are you the only person who can do this task?
  • How much do you love doing this task?

 

If the answer to any of the above is low or negative, then prepare to delegate it. If cash flow is constraining you from hiring another staff member, consider the alternative of integrating a cost-effective Virtual Assistant into your business. 

 

Now you have been able to provide a structure to improve your internal operations, you are on your way to regain control of your time. This time is now yours… to spend, however you see fit. 

 

Contact the team at trusttheprocess.com.au to learn more. 

Why do I need a Virtual Assistant?

Why do I need a Virtual Assistant?

The simple answer is because your time is precious. Time is the key limiting factor within nearly every small business. The business owner is trying to wear all the hats in the business – making the sales, delivering the product, scheduling the staff as well as trying to keep on top of the cash and accounting. It’s a never ending juggle. There just simply is not enough time to do everything that needs to be done. 

 

In any business there are activities which are high value and high impact and others which are more administrative and routine. The high value activities takes the business to the next level, they empower the business to reach its full potential. Examples of these are strategic planning, product development, building and maintaining relationships with clients. The lower value activities may include invoicing, inbox management, databasing and competitor research. Not saying these tasks are not important, getting paid certainly is very important. However, these activities are largely routine, administrative in nature. They are the sort of activity that gets the business through the next hour or the next day and do not directly contribute to revenue generation. 

 

A key indicator to determine whether a task has the potential to be delegated to a VA is the level of repeatability. If you are doing this activity every day, or every week or at the same point of a delivery cycle, then you can likely capture it in a procedure or ‘how-to guide’. 

 

Once we are able to capture these low-value activities in ‘how-to-guides’, we are ready to integrate a Virtual Assistant. The ‘how-to-guides’ provide the basis of the training manual to help you keep control of the processes within your business. 

 

The best thing of all about a VA is what you can do with your time once you delegate the administrative tasks. Apart from the fact they are extremely cost effective, intelligent, computer savvy and hard-working, the change they can make in your life allows you to focus on…. Well whatever you want. Spend more time on your business strategy, product development, family and friends or even… yourself. 

 

Appreciate the value of your time, it’s really just another word for life.