Many people I speak to can see the benefits of a systemised business. ‘Look at McDonald’s; look at Amazon,’ they say, ‘every really successful business is systemised…absolutely…there’s no getting away from it.’
But when it comes down to their own business you can see them beginning to come out in a rash. The thought of systemising their business is just too overwhelming…
’I don’t have time’,
‘I can’t afford it’
‘Systems are just a luxury’ I’ve heard them all.
The reality is that we all already have systems in our business; we all do things! But if the way we do things is not simple, logical and repeatable then we are wasting time and money and not achieving what every Customer (and every business owner) wants – consistency! We’re spending time checking, correcting,complaining…working in our business not on it.
What I’m saying is that we have a choice, either
Do things haphazardly – with each team member doing things their way, reinventing the wheel every time a task is done, little being done the way you want it to be, or
Do things, do every task in your business, in a simple logical repeatable way
For me it’s a no brainer.
The question is not, ‘Can I afford to systemise my business?’ but ‘Can I afford not to?’
And the reality is, it’s really not the huge, overwhelming, expensive task you think it is.
You decide you’re going to do it, you start small – with your most routine, every day tasks – and you ask yourself:
‘Is this task simple?’ Could anyone walking in off the street, (if it’s a basic task), or with the necessary technical knowledge (if it’s a specialist task) follow the steps to complete it?
‘Is this task logical?’ Does the way we do it make sense? Can I answer the question, ‘why do you do it this way?’
‘Is this task repeatable?’ Can it be done in the same way every time? Can I train people to do it this way?
A system is simply a uniform and consistent way of doing things that makes your life easier. They only exist to make life easier. If a system doesn’t make life easier – for you, your team, or your customer – then it’s the wrong system.
There aren’t five different ways to cook fries at McDonald’s; there is one way. There aren’t seven different ways to open up the restaurant and get everything set up for the day, there is one way. A team member at McDonald’s can’t decide that they want to prepare a Big Mac their way, there is one way to build a Big Mac, and everyone does it that way, every time, no exceptions.
Everybody at McDonald’s at every level, knows ‘the way we do things around here’ and everything that is done, is simple, logical and repeatable.
Contrary to what they might tell you, McDonald’s franchisees have a great life – they have freedom to choose when they’ll work and when they won’t – when they’ll go to the golf course, or on holiday, or simply stay in bed. They have that freedom because their business has systems, because everybody that works in their business knows exactly the way things work, because they can trust their team to perform consistently every single day.
Freedom, Trust and Consistency – business nirvana!
And the only difference between them and you, is that they have effective systems.
So what are you going to do about it?
Do one thing today: Draw a line in the sand and take one small simple step towards a more consistent business – make a list of your routine, daily, weekly and monthly tasks.
Then make a plan to take just one of those tasks every week – just one a week – and ask yourself if it’s simple, logical and repeatable?. And then make it so. Involve your team to make this an even more powerful exercise.
Do that every week, and you’ll have 52 systems in your business this time next year.
See! Not overwhelming at all.
To your McFreedom!
PS If you really want to do this. If you really want to fast-track your route to Trust, consistency and freedom then invest two days and join me for one of my Systems4Scale Bootcamps where I’ll share a whole bunch of McFreedom Secrets and get you started on your essential systems. Find out more HERE.
PPS Remember, you can always find time for what’s most important to you. So ask yourself, ‘how important is my FREEDOM?’
Marianne is the author of three books, and is currently working on her fourth, whilst regularly writing her blog, we hope you enjoy it :-)