The theory behind systemising your business is that it has the appropriate systems in place to generate the income you need and with a higher value, without you working all the hours within it. Without you having to make all the decisions. Without you being the bottleneck.

Other benefits to systemising your business

Each one of the benefits in the diagram below will save you time. This time can be redirected for working on growth strategies if you’re not planning to exit your business in the near future, or it can simply give you back the time you planned to have when you first started your entrepreneurial journey.

Systemising also puts the emphasis of running the business on your team. Leaders will emerge and roles can be re-configured to allow a smoother exit for you.

A systemised business is also more attractive to a buyer as they can simply adopt the same processes that are in place without having to untangle unorthodox methods or install new processes themselves.

And of course, systemising will ultimately save you money. For example, a good, systemised process that allows for the collection of debtor money quickly, reduces the bad debt value, meaning you don’t have to find additional turnover to cover that debt.

‘A business system or process is an activity or set of activities that will accomplish a specific organisational goal.’

TIP: Remember your end goal for your business. Choose systems that will get you there quicker.

What does a systemised business look like?

Remember the aim of systemising is to free up your time away from the business so you can achieve your goals or begin to exit. The systems you choose can be any number of processes such as:

  • Step-by-step processes to be followed
  • Standardised letter templates, meeting agendas, forms or emails
  • Software to automate the systems
  • Videos for explaining processes or aid sales and customer relationships.

Think of a business as a series of systems and each system has a role and a purpose. If it doesn’t perform, or doesn’t seem to have a purpose, it needn’t be there – streamline…

TIP: Start with the end result you want to achieve and work backwards. Consider the steps that will get you where you want to be.

System mapping

A system map is a visual representation of a given business system. A simple example of which can be the organisational chart – the who’s who of the company if you like.

This type of map can be applied to any system, and include feedback loops, trends and much more.

Getting more complex is this example of sales enquiry system map.

Notice the ‘Produce a quote’ box. From this box you can add another map that visualises the system for how you actually get a quote produced – who is responsible, what software or templates are used, is there a timeframe by which it must be completed and so on.

More guidance on systemising your business

This article is a taste of the content in module nine of the Online Business Development Programme. I hope it has given you a good basis to start from and generated some ideas for systemising your business.

However, if you are planning to exit your business, the full module goes into much greater detail, offering you tips to help you create a business that can operate without you while providing you with more options, and the steps to help you consider, analyse and implement the systems you need. As ever, I offer an hour of free business mentoring where we can discuss your plans and ideas for systemising or exiting your business, while I act as a sounding board and mentor. Together we can make some positive decisions in that time.

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