A person recently asked me, "What do you do for a living?" I replied that I help business owners learn how to develop effective systems and processes. The person responded, "How boring; I feel sorry for you." ... Ouch! That hurt, as if he said something bad about one of my kids.
I guess I am a bit odd because I find systems fascinating. They are the secret to social and scientific advancement, and they provide the solution to many of the world's problems. They operate in nature, in societies, in governments, in business, and in families. Smart people recognize the importance of good systems and processes. Wise people learn how to use them to their advantage.
Truthfully, if you aren't attracted to Systems Thinking like iron to a magnet, like bees to honey, like flies to a... well you know what I mean, then you really shouldn't be in business. I mean that sincerely. By the way, all three of those attractions are part of nature's amazing systems. They happen for a reason, and each provides a positive benefit to the world.
Where is Your Business Today?
Building exceptional systems and processes to profitably find and serve customers is the Master Skill of the entrepreneur. Creating systems that consistently get desired results is critical at every stage of business development. So, which of the following describes you?
- Starting a Business? Create essential business systems to organize and structure a new company that runs smoothly and impresses customers right from the start. If you begin your business as a Systems Thinker, you will never regret it. Systems and processes are your building blocks to success. There is no other way!
- Growing a Business? Effective marketing and sales systems are the catalyst to growth. However, after the euphoria of increased demand, don't slip into crisis mode with inadequate systems for making or delivering your products and services. Many companies can't handle rapid growth—too many system inputs. Owners lose control. System-breakdowns lead to ruin. You must elevate unsatisfactory systems and processes to increase throughput and keep customers happy. There is no other way!
- Fixing a Business? Most small businesses are filled with mistakes, lost time, and rework, often unnoticed by busy owners and managers. Effective systems dramatically reduce waste and inefficiencies. In a tough economy, every penny counts. Cut out the fat and put more money into the pocket of your stakeholders—including yourself—with smooth-running and cost-effective business systems and processes. There is no other way!
- Franchising a Business? Turn your entire operation into a self-running system that provides consistent results day after day. Let someone manage the business for you, or replicate it in other markets. Once you create your moneymaking machine—and document the successful way you do things—it is easy to franchise or repeat in other locations. Good business systems and processes enable you to become independent and free of the daily grind. Again, there is no other way!
Do You Have the Entrepreneurial Bug?
You may not need to focus on system development if you are self-employed, a network marketer, or a franchise owner. Self-employed people usually have the systems in their head; they are the system. Network marketers plug into an existing system. Franchise owners buy a business with all the systems and processes developed, proven, and ready to go. They also pay a premium for this service.
However, if you are an entrepreneur, you have the bug to create your own unique systems for providing remarkable products and services to your target market. I applaud your drive and courage!
Final Note and Caution: Don't be fooled into thinking that you can prosper without obedience to the laws that govern success. Don't believe that you can ignore the Law of Cause and Effect—everything happens for a reason. Don't believe that you can build a lasting and profitable business without using high-performance systems and processes to create consistent and predictable results.
Be Smart. Become a Systems Thinker!