Systemization is indispensable to entrepreneurship. Kaufman states in the first section of his book that a business is a repeatable process. In this section he defines, a system as, “a process made explicit and repeatable.” When you zoom your perspective out, you can see that any business is one big system of value creation and delivery.
The power of systemization comes from making each step in the process explicit. When you do this, it allows you to examine each step to make improvements that increase the efficiency of the entire system. For example, if you manually onboard each new customer into your widget building platform, you’d be spending a lot of time and energy that could be redirected toward growing your business or improving your product. If you examine each step of that onboarding process, you can create automated emails or videos to relay all of the information necessary to get new customers started and answer common questions. This would free up your time and energy to focus on more important things.
Another benefit of systemization is that it improves communication between team members. When your business gets large enough to require adding people to your team, having systems in place makes it easy for everyone to be on the same page, and understand how to best contribute value to the business. Without explicit systems, new team members are left to figure out processes on their own, which could negatively affect your business’s reputation and consequently its bottom line. Good employee management starts with having good systems in place for them to plug into.
This section reminds me of the book, “The E-Myth Revisited,” by Michael Gerber. In his book Gerber explains that someone may know how to create a cool product or provide an excellent service, but that doesn’t mean that they know how to grow a business. When you start a business, you not only become the technical director, but the CEO, CFO, CTO, CMO as well as many other things. The key to solving this problem of growth is systems. He says to think of your business, no matter how small now, as a national franchise from day one. With every new aspect of the business that you must figure out, also be thinking working toward removing and replacing yourself from that system. Whether that’s through automation, outsourcing or hiring employees, focus on creating simple and efficient systems so that anyone, even a computer program, can step in and do the job for you. That’s how you grow a business. Work on systematizing every process in your value stream, and your business will begin to explode with growth.