One of my favourite business books is “The E-Myth Revisited” by Michael Gerber. I’m sure I’ve written about it before and I’m sure I’ll write about it again.
But, at its heart, is the idea that for your business to be sustainable, for it to remain successful in the medium to long term, it has to be consistent.
Gerber gives the example of going for a haircut. The first time you go, it’s the best fade you’ve ever had (I love a good fade). The next time you go, it’s sloppy and uneven. Would you bother going again? When it comes to hair, you can’t take the risk.
Gerber’s answer is to have Standard Operating Procedures – a written down way of doing things that all your staff adhere to.
Nowadays, you can take this even further; when this happens, one of those robots I was talking about yesterday can trigger a standardised response.
Of course, it will never work perfectly 100% of the time. So you need a way of intervening, of stopping the machine. But, face it, if you didn’t have those Standard Operating Procedures, your clients won’t know what they’re getting each time they buy from you – so they’re less likely to come back and need that intervention.
Take action Which parts of your business need Standard Operating Procedures? Who’s job is it to write them? Who’s job is it to review them every quarter?