Creating a SYSTEMS Driven Culture!
Updated: Jan 23
There's nothing more frustrating than constantly repeating yourself.
A mistake gets made. You identify the worker at fault and coach them only to find they make the same mistake the next day, the next, and the next. Yet many business owners do exactly that, they get stuck repeatedly solving the same problems, and it's an endless game of business whack-a-mole. This is why you need a systems-driven culture.
When something goes wrong in your business, blame the system, not the person. Instead of pointing fingers at team members, your first step should be to look at the system, figure out what went wrong, and find the solution. Identify problems at a systems level, and you'll find the root cause. Solve it as a system, and you solve it forever.
When we think about systems culture, frequently, there's a lot of baggage that people carry around, business owners in particular. I don't have time, and I don't have money; I'll do it later. So they keep on putting off systemization. Everybody has them; excuses and reasons not to do something always pop up. So excuses end up being this baggage that affects your motivation.
We need to think about intensity before consistency because you're looking for consistency. If you rely on your motivation, your motivation will go up and down until you give up due to frustration. Then, because resistance happens, you come up with all these excuses and stop.
You take the action that deep down you know you need to take. That's why you're reading this because you know systems are at the foundation of all profitable businesses. There's no way around it. So at some point, you'll have to put systems in place.
So if you want to build a business that works without you, if you're going to scale, if you want to weather any storm and get through any market conditions, you have to put systems in place. There are no two ways, so quit putting it off and start taking action.
And think about how we move from motivation to make this a habit, which becomes how we do things here. Part of it is that you start with the idea of perfection when you should start with repetition, not perfection. That's a biggie; we want to make sure something happens. You're not going to do it perfectly the first time. You're going to make mistakes. That's part of the process. So you need to get into the rhythm of making this repetitive, keeping it front and center, and giving systems the constant attention they deserve as one of the most, if not the most, crucial assets in your business. And this comes down to the idea of building habits.
What habits could you build inside your business to ensure systems get attention? I'll give you some ideas. Firstly, you need to make some time for systems. Please put it on your calendar, and add it as an agenda item for your meetings to ensure it comes up regularly.
Build this habit when something goes wrong in your business, and it's always the system's fault first. Don't point the finger at team members and say, why didn't you do this? Why did you do this wrong, or you missed that step? Instead, the first default step should be let's look at the system and did you follow the system?
If an issue happens and they follow the system, well, great. Let's tweak the system and then ensure that doesn't happen again. Then we start to, rather than playing Whack a mole in business, solve problems at the root cause. At the systems level, we solve it once and then solve it forever.
Most business owners get stuck on this treadmill of solving the same problem repeatedly again and again, and it's the same problem every single time. Solve it once as a system. Make it the way you do things, and then move on to another issue.
If you think that, let me burst your bubble here; if you feel that you're going to reach a point where you never have any challenges in your business, let me assure you that you'll never get to that point. Business is about solving problems. But you need to solve higher-quality problems as a business owner. So you keep on leveling up at every stage in business. There are just new challenges to overcome.
What drains your entrepreneurial life force? The quickest is if you're solving the same problems and then you lose that drive as a business owner because it becomes frustrating. After all, you have to repeat yourself and tell the team that they have to do this, and hey, I told you how to do that last time. So make it the system's fault. But, first, find a system solution.
Build a level of accountability and transparency. How can you build accountability and transparency into your business where it is crystal clear who is doing what by when and the expectations and standards around it?
And take on this mindset with the idea of constant and never-ending improvement of systems. This process is not a one-and-done scenario. When you build culture, this is the way that we do things. So here is what we're trying to get to achieve.
This is not a situation; I've systemized for three months, and then I'm done. After that, however, it will get easier. But, of course, you must get over the hump first, remind your staff to use the systems, and keep it front and center. But then there will become a point where you've recruited, onboarded, and trained people; this is how we do things here. And then it gets easier.
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