Are there certain parts of your business that you feel have to be done by you – the business owner?
Are there bottlenecks in your business because you – the business owner – aren’t able to accomplish certain tasks in a timely manner?
Are these bottlenecks in the areas of your business that you – the business owner – hates to do?
As a business advisor, I have seen these factors present in many businesses. If any of these facts are true for you in your business, there may be a lot of freedom and profit available from successfully implementing a system to help the situation. Please allow me to approach this by addressing some excuses I’ve heard for implementing change:
1) I am not ready or willing to give up control of this task
Let’s face it, most small business owners are control freaks – and for good reason. Until you are willing to give up control, you will never get the freedom from the task. To make it easier to give up control, you can design the system to be the way you like things done yourself. Although the system will be used by others, as the designer you get to create it the way you want. By doing this, it makes it easier to give up control.
2) It’s too overwhelming and I don’t know where to start
If you are expecting to systematize your business overnight, you will be disappointed and frustrated. The key is to break it down into small pieces. Pick an easy task and create a system for the particular task. Just take a pen and paper and write down each step in performing the task as you do the task yourself. To make sure you have not missed anything, have someone else try and use the system while you supervise. Even though it takes an extra investment of time up front to create the system, once you have it completed you have the freedom to delegate the task whenever you would like.
3) I tried it before and it didn’t work – there were too many mistakes
This could have happened for a number of reasons, but the most common is a ‘perfectionist’ expectation of the business owner. You delegated a task and it was not done as well as you can do it. You decided you are better off just doing it yourself. Mistakes cost money and you can’t afford them.
I had the perfectionist expectation myself until a master systemetizer named Wally explained to me, ‘Be happy if they can do it 80% as well as you can at first and tickle them up toward 100%’.
Put the proper effort into the system creation and pick a task that won’t ‘sell the farm’ if there is a mistake made. It is important to embrace failure as part of learning. Controlled failure. Think of it as ‘failing forward’.
In summary, the motivation for system building is this: If you can build a system to delegate the tasks that you hate doing and these tasks are causing bottlenecks too – your reward will be more freedom and more profit!