What Is Your Way? 4 Reasons You MUST Find It and Follow It.
How do you exercise more control over your business and experience more freedom at the same time?
How do you establish consistency? Consistency in the quality of your products, in your service, in your administrative efficiency—you can’t be successful without it.
Every successful business has what Gino Wickman calls its Way. Have you identified yours?
In his book, Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business, Wickman warns that even business owners who don’t think processes are an issue usually are in for some surprises when they take an objective look. It’s a good idea to take an hour or two with your leadership team to evaluate and document your six to ten core processes, including but not necessarily limited to HR, marketing, sales, operations, accounting, and customer retention.
Doing this will yield four powerful benefits:
1. Simplicity. The need to simplify could show up in two ways. Without standardization, each person might be doing things their own way, and sometimes not even the same way twice. The other way sounds like “We’ve just always done it this way.” Neither way leads to success.
2. Fewer screw-ups. Create whatever checklists you need, make the process as logical and user-friendly as possible, and then retrain everyone to use it. When mistakes do happen, you can easily track back and see where someone did not follow the process and how best to fix the blip.
3. Better technology decisions. Don’t even think about buying software without first defining and documenting your processes. You don't want to automate the cow paths.... Otherwise, how will you know what you need? As an example, Wickman tells how he once spent $45,000 to have software custom created to manage information and interaction with his company’s target market. It didn’t perform as expected, and after his team defined and documented their processes better, he examined the software market and found a $500 off-the-shelf program that meshed with their needs perfectly.
4. A self-sustaining business. If you or any of your leadership team were not there, could the business carry on? Wickman puts it pretty strongly: “You have to get your key processes out of your head and onto paper.” A documented, working, well-oiled system is scalable and attractive to buyers if and when you decide to sell your business.
Throughout the years I’ve worked with many organizations to help them identify and document their Way, and I’m available to consult with you and your team on processes as well.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll be prepared to decide what CRM software will be the best tool for your marketing, sales, and customer retention core processes. Sage ACT 2012 or Sage SalesLogix CRM are economical yet highly customizable solutions to power your business success.