Not Having a System:
Base level. Total chaos. Crisis. Losing money, losing key staff, poor records, problems with addictions, personal relationship problems falling over into the work day, broken systems or just not having a system. Being sloppy. Not keeping your word.
- Triage is needed. Basic disciplines such as separating things into five or six easily clarified segments and addressing them, from finance, to schedule, reading email, returning calls, and responding even if it means having to say, ‘sorry we missed you, but we will get back to you’, ‘sorry for not responding’, ‘sorry for my delay’, and ‘have not forgotten you’.
- This all happens more than you think and has most unfortunately become normal. Don’t become the norm. It is sloppy and disregard others, and there is no honor in it.
Not Using The System you have:
This is so common, that like the Not Having a system that it is almost indistinguishable. Both are about lack of controls, but in this case, its like having a budget, a schedule, a contact list, a product list, and deadlines but operating with the tacit agreement between those involved that it is OK to collapse, to fall through, not to keep ones word, be on time, and deliver or respond in a timely manner.
- Deciding to try to be honorable, reliable, and accountable. Taking the worst instances, and one by one setting out to fix them, and if so broken as to be near impossible, at least facing it and communicating with those involved.
- In an era of smart phones, voice mail, hidden address and locations, out of office, and other such virtualizations, we can all say how normal disengagement can be, but our emphasis is on being different by being as your word, returning calls, reply to emails, and processing requests by partner-suppliers, and customers alike.
Having Then Using The System, But its The Wrong One:
Sometimes, you have to go back and remove what you have, by making a process map, and identifying key operations, evaluating functionalities, removing personnel, and thus finding better ones. Sometimes its not having a enough customers but you have them. Or you have them, but they drain you.
- A program for improvement. More on this next time.
Refinement and Implementation:
You have a system, you use it, and it even works. But you want to be even better.
- How to attain excellence. Defining you key markets, key customers, key processes. More on this next time.