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Do you have systems problems in your business?

Your business is a web of interconnected systems, and any problems you face can be traced back to inefficiencies, gaps, or shortcomings in these systems.

Many of the business leaders I work with come to me with these common business problems.

How many are true for you?

1. Lack of useful information “we don’t really know how the business is doing”

If you have missing or incorrect information, it’s difficult to get a clear picture of business performance. This creates blind spots that can negatively impact decision-making.

2. Inefficiency, reduced productivity, increased costs – and you don’t know where

Without good systems, you may experience delays, duplication of effort, and waste of resources. You may also experience increased costs due to the need for manual processes, rework, and other inefficiencies. Worst of all, you may not even know where these issues are occurring.

3. Customer dissatisfaction, leading to reduced revenue

Poor systems can result in incorrect orders, late deliveries, poor customer service, and other issues leading to frustrated customers. Often the more devastating problem is inconsistent delivery. We call this the “silent killer” since the customers may not complain, they just stop frequenting. This can result in loss of business and decreased revenues.

4. Employee frustration and disengagement

Employees who are bogged down by ineffective systems can become disengaged and less productive. Your people want to do a good job for you, without systems and structure, they struggle to perform.

5. Spending a lot of time “firefighting”

You find yourself running from one problem to the next. When you fix one thing, it seems to break another. Your employees come to you with problem after problem. You’re so busy putting out fires that you don’t have time to think.

6. Loss of competitive advantage

Companies with poor systems often cannot compete with those with well-designed, efficient systems in place. Without good systems, you’ll be too distracted / focused on fixing problems instead of looking ahead to what’s next in the world. Not only will you miss opportunities, but you may also find yourself left behind due to technology changes or cultural shifts.

When you fix your systems, you fix your business

I work with my clients to create predictable businesses, which some may consider “boring.”

If you want risk, go to Vegas.

If you want excitement, go start a new division, expand into a new market, or acquire a complementary business.

If you just want to stop putting out fires and build a successful and profitable business – consistency and predictability are the key components.

These come from systems.

When you have great systems in place you can expect:

  • Improved efficiency: Systems can streamline processes and eliminate redundancies, reducing the time and effort needed to complete tasks and freeing time for more valuable activities.
  • Increased visibility: With transparent systems in place, it’s easier to see how work is progressing, identify bottlenecks, and track performance over time – without micro-managing!
  • Better collaboration: Systems can facilitate communication and collaboration between different teams and departments, reducing the risk of miscommunication and ensuring everyone is on the same page.
  • Reduced stress: Systems can help eliminate confusion, reduce the need for micromanagement, and create a more organized and predictable work environment.
  • Increased scalability: As your business grows, systems can be easily scaled and adapted to accommodate new employees, customers, and processes.
  • Less reliance on key personnel: with good systems in place, you become less reliant on the one key person who knows what to do/holds all the knowledge – and thus holds you or your business hostage.
  • Enhanced accountability: Systems can provide a clear framework for assigning roles and responsibilities, reducing the risk of confusion and ensuring everyone is accountable for their work.
  • Improved decision-making: With better data and insights, it’s easier to make informed decisions that drive business growth and success.
  • Synthesis of information: Systems can help bring together disparate data and information from across the business, making it easier to identify trends and make data-driven decisions. If you’re a gut-instinct person, you will have data to back up or confirm your choices.

Who do you turn to for help?

Effective systems and process implementation requires several specific skills:

  1. Strategic thinking: The ability to see the big picture, understand the overall goals and objectives of the organization and develop plans to achieve them.
  2. Problem-solving: Skills to identify problems and develop practical solutions.
  3. Project management: The ability to manage complex projects, from start to finish, and ensure that they are delivered on time and within budget.
  4. Communication & Leadership: The ability to communicate effectively with stakeholders at all levels of the organization, including employees, customers, and partners. The ability to lead and motivate teams and to build a culture of continuous improvement and collaboration.
  5. Technical expertise: A strong understanding of technology, data management, and the tools and systems used in process improvement and systems design.
  6. Analytical skills: The ability to gather and analyze data, and to use that data to inform decision-making and drive continuous improvement.
  7. Adaptability: The ability to quickly adapt to changing circumstances and to be flexible and open-minded in the face of new challenges and opportunities.
  8. Attention to detail: The ability to pay close attention to detail and ensure that all project aspects are executed with precision and accuracy.
  9. Continuous learning: A commitment to continuous learning and development and a willingness to stay up-to-date with the latest tools, techniques, and best practices in process improvement and systems design.
  10. Synthesis: The ability to analyze, interpret, and integrate information from multiple sources to understand complex systems and processes comprehensively. This skill allows the company to identify areas for improvement, design effective solutions, and incorporate them into the existing systems seamlessly.

Our team at Growth Strategy specializes in business process improvement, systems design, and implementation.

We’ve helped dozens of companies – and we can help you too!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jean-Eric Plamondon

Founder and Systems Strategist at Growth Strategies.

Serial entrepreneur with direct experience launching, growing, & selling a number of businesses including scaling a scrap metal business from $0 to $5 Million in 6 months.

Certified Management Consultant and Value Builder Advisor. Author of the Boring Business Manifesto.

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