It is exciting when businesses begin to grow and take on new team members. Demand is there, sales are up, and the team needs to expand. But what happens if processes are not adapted to accommodate the increased employee levels? What happens if processes are not documented and there are no standards in place?
Reviewing processes should be a key consideration for business owners when teams expand. With more people to carry out a process, there may be more efficient ways of working. Equally, making sure processes are mapped and up to date is key too. This helps to ensure everyone on the team is following the same process. Well documented standards ensure that everyone knows the expectation for each part of the process they carry out. Without these, team members will have differing views on what is expected of them because, let’s face it, no one person is the same. We all have different personalities, characteristics, and values. What matters to one person, does not matter to the other and vice versa.
I recently had a conversation with someone responsible for cleaning holiday cottages. Feeling demotivated, he explained that there are no standards in place, so no one knows the level of cleaning required. He explained that different team members switched between cottages and each holiday home had unique things that needed attending to. However, these were not documented anywhere, so things were not always done properly. This was really demotivating him because it left him with the feeling of ‘what is the point’? He found it very hard to feel proud of what he was doing. An easy fix here would be to map processes and write out standards for each holiday cottage. This would help motivate team members and it will provide a higher and consistent standard of cleaning.
So, how do efficient and well-mapped processes/standards motivate team members?
- Everyone knows exactly what is expected of them, everyone knows exactly what they should be doing, there is no ambiguity or room for doubt.
- These processes and standards also help form part of an employee’s job description and helps form objectives for measuring performance. Performance Management is a key element of helping motivate a workplace.
- Team members might have ideas on how processes can be improved. Suggestions for improvements from those carrying out the processes daily can be invaluable. Taking these suggestions onboard will help your team members feel motivated and proud of the work that they do.
In addition to motivation, mapped processes and standards also helps with business continuity. The Covid-19 pandemic has put a lot of businesses to the test in this area. So many have adapted well to move their business online where this has been possible. If you have certain team members with knowledge that other team members don’t know, what happens if they go off sick? Or leave the business? A good business won’t have one team member holding all the knowledge. They will have this knowledge shared and documented so that anyone can step in and take hold of the reins. This ensures that their business continues to run regardless of what is happening with employees on the inside.
It can also be invaluable to have someone from the outside look at business processes with a fresh pair of eyes. If you would like external support with your business process, standards, and efficiencies, we work in partnership with businesses to maximise your day and get your business ready for growth. I offer a free 60-minute consultation which provides you with clear next steps for moving your business forward. Get in touch.