Few and far between is the entrepreneur who enjoys writing processes. After all, starting and running a business is much more about doing that writing, right?
Many an ambitious entrepreneur has worked tirelessly in a labor of love to create something really awesome without ever documenting a process. Then, maybe someday, when the company gets large enough to involve levels of management and departments, it might be time to write processes.
This thought processes misses an enormous opportunity!!
The process of documenting processes in writing has multiple, powerful benefits:
- It extracts, from the entrepreneur’s brain, the brilliant details of how they want things done, which have been the basis for their success. These are things they often fail to mention, think others will automatically do, or don’t even realize they do themselves. Gold mine of information! Leads to consistency.
- When followed by others, it leads to more effective communication of expectations, and enables employees to be more successful at completing tasks as expected. Many processes can be turned into checklists to ensure quality performance. Leads to increasingly successful employees.
- Maybe most exciting, they provide a basis for creativity. How can you improve a process unless you know how it works now? How can you know if a process needs to be improved if it is not done consistently in the first place? By looking at and documenting each step of the process, each step becomes an opportunity for creativity and improvement. Flowchart the process and circle the areas with greatest risk exposure, greatest opportunity to create awesome customer experiences and greatest chances to innovate and move ahead of the competition. Leads to innovation and growth!
It can be quite a painful exercise to document processes – especially to getting started. And, as innovations happen, the processes really should be updated. But, even in a very growth-focused, entrepreneurial organization, there are still some people who ‘ground’ the rest of the team who, if supported by others, would gladly do this for you. Who are these individuals in your organization or department?