Process improvement can be boring and tedious, but it doesn’t have to be. Oftentimes, it is only due to misconceptions and mistakes organizations make when doing it. But once myths are dispelled and mistakes are avoided, I can guarantee you and your people would enjoy the “process” 😀.
This is the first part of a blog series covering the biggest mistakes and myths about process improvement that every leader should know.
Mistake #1 Building processes that benefit the organization, not the customer
One of the biggest mistakes organizations commit right now is building processes that are good for them but not good for their customers. You can experience this with healthcare companies asking you to fill out an 18-page application form in advance. They’re putting the burden on the customers when it’s their job to do it. Why make it harder for people to give you money?
The push has been to remove bodies–operate with fewer human touchpoints–and decrease costs. But it’s a hindrance to the customer’s experience and one of the main reasons why people decide not to do business with a company.
These days you’ll often hear people say, “The system won’t let me do it.” Now we’re humanizing a system and blaming it as if it is a person. Unfortunately, that has occurred because leaders and organizations are putting systems ahead of people. And this is related to the next significant mistake many organizations are guilty of 👇which is:
Mistake #2 Designing processes to match the technology
Another common mistake organizations make is implementing a new and exciting technology, thinking it will solve all their problems. However, adding new tech to a poor process can only make the current situation worse. When it comes to process improvement every organization must:
Design the operation first, then match the tech to the operation and process that is needed.
You DO NOT implement tech, and then change everything you do and how you do it to match the system because of its default settings. The reason why even the best CRMs fail is that it lacks planning and change management. It didn’t prioritize the people who would be using the system: your customers.
Your secret sauce is your special (your own) company-way of doing things.
It’s in how fast you get a quote out, the welcome letter you send during onboarding, the gifts you send on customer anniversaries…your unique processes, all packaged together under your company-way that make you who you are. Don’t give that away by implementing a system and just doing it their way.
Everything you know to be true about your industry is lost if you give it up for the sake of tech automation.
For tech to be effective it should be used at the right time. You first need to streamline your processes and be super clear on your standard. You must build consistency–delivering the same way, the right way, every time, your company-way–only then can you bring tech in to make things better.
More often than not, the things that make process improvement complicated are the ones that shouldn’t be doing in the first place. I want to dispel the myth that this work is scary and hard. In the next blog, I’ll be sharing with you the common myths about process improvement that have been considered the truth over the past decade.
In love and respect,