Introducing New Processes To Your Business

Any transformation you undertake will eventually have you introduce some form of new process or checklist. At the heart of systemisation is standardised processes and procedures that ensure consistency, quality and productivity.

New processes can (and should) be received with a great deal of excitement. However, it is also common for transforming businesses to have their new processes received with much reluctance and/or actively ignored in favour of the old!

The whole idea of creating standard processes and checklists is to introduce the essential consistency on which to build your business. Repeatable, trainable and service orientated processes not only ensure that you deliver consistent quality to your clients, but allow you to build an engine room that is efficient and productive (and of course profitable).

New procedures received with reluctance and/or actively ignored suggest one important thing - there has been no consultation or input from your team - they have no "ownership" of it. Staff feel that the change is imposed and regardless of how good the procedure or checklist is, will find problems and inefficiencies which provide a reason for them to revert to the old way of doing things.

Clearly, this situation means that the time and effort invested in the new procedure is potentially lost. Also lost is the opportunity of starting to be more profitable with core services.

At this point, many business owners and leader have given up. "It's too hard to transform", "I knew it wouldn't work", "Transformation is no good for our business" are just some of the many excuses we have heard. Our advice is not to give up but rather change tactics - for each practice that has given up, another one has successfully made the journey - and you can too.

Avoid wasting the effort of building new procedures that are ignored, by using these simple concepts:

1. Team members who "own" processes will use them.

2. Create a sense of ownership by involving your team in the process of building or tailoring new procedures. That means:

  • Getting the team involved.
  • Give them some guidelines (where there are financial, legal or other constraints)
  • Trust them to get on with it and build the procedure.

3. Maintain an objective review or approval process - not one that automatically vetoes new ideas.

It is this last point that often causes a stumbling block - "Trust". Many partners feel that their way of completing a task is the best. They have the knowledge, experience and focus to know what's best for the clients. Here is the hard lesson - despite your experience, your knowledge and training, collectively, your team will develop a procedure that might not look like yours, but will often deliver a better result.

A myth? We have seen this time and time again both in our own business, in others and remain convinced at the power of the team in this area. That leads us to our next suggestions:

4. Remain open minded throughout transformation.

Don't be alarmed or upset if the ideas the team is generating are poles apart from your thinking. These ideas tend to find their way into well thought out procedures that are often better than what you may have thought of in isolation.

5. If you are concerned the ideas are a bit too radical, remind the team of the objectives and guidelines of the task and get them to assess where there are gaps.

Getting your team involved in designing new procedures is unbelievably valuable in ensuring they are adopted in your business. Let's face it, we have yet to hear of a staff member who won't use a procedure they have actively been a part of building!

About Tony Gattari, Achievers Group

The author is founder and Chief Energy Officer of Achievers group. He is a much in demand passionate professional speaker, business educator, author and corporate, business advisor. He has worked with over 140 businesses around the world.

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