You want to grow your service business this year, right? Automation is about turning the things that are working well in your business into machines that will multiply your growth. We’re not manufacturing products, we’re working in the service industry, so those ‘machines’ are systems. What is a system? A sequence of steps to complete a task, whether it’s installing a toilet, loading up a truck or doing a deposit at the bank. Businesses that grow and become more valuable are businesses that have developed systems and improved them over time.
We’re going to look at six benefits of systems, but you can find out more about creating systems in your business by checking chapter 11 of Mike Agugliaro’s book The Secrets of Business Mastery or by checking out the resources in the Warrior’s Den.
You can stop reinventing the wheel.
Think about the last time one of your team members brought a problem to you. How many times have you ‘solved’ that problem before? Is it possible that you, your managers and some of your top employees are, in fact, ‘reinventing the wheel’ over and over again? Write it down. Create a system. And the next time someone runs into this, no one has to think through a solution, they just have to follow the system. The more systems you create, the more automated your business will become.
Tasks are easier to delegate.
Many entrepreneurs do everything because without systems, it’s hard to delegate work to others and have it completed properly. Start creating systems and, then, teach others how to follow those systems. This will free you up to work ON the business instead of IN the business.
Training workers is simplified.
Whenever you want a worker to learn how to do a job they haven’t done before, you can show them the system, have them practice it and then give them a checklist so they can do it on their own and verify their work. Training new workers becomes a matter of teaching them to follow your systems.
Customers experience consistently great service.
If every worker completes jobs the way they think is best, every customer experience is different and customers will tend to favor one service expert over others. But when workers follow the same systems for installing furnaces, clearing drains and ensuring that they offer Wow-level service, customers will consistently be impressed by all of your service experts.
Your business runs more efficiently.
You want every system for jobs in your business to be the best way of doing it so that it takes the shortest time and is completed in a way that exceeds customer expectations. There will be fewer callbacks because there will be fewer mistakes. More jobs will be completed. Greater efficiency means greater profit.
You can continually improve your business.
Sometimes business owners resist creating too many systems because they want their service experts to be able to “do it their own way,” to innovate, and to improve. But this actually happens better when you have systems in place. Mike Agugliaro explains that “the key to successful management is about building great systems and then checking on them regularly.” You can tweak a system and improve it when a worker proves that their method gets the job done better.
Service business owners who stop reinventing the wheel and start designing systems start growing their businesses. They are freed up as other team members follow the systems and train others to follow them. Manage your systems for continual improvement and your business will become more efficient, more profitable—it will run like a machine!—and it will become more valuable if you ever want to sell it.