What are the processes that are holding your capacity captive?
The Other Guys
Well, we’ve all encountered roadblocks like these with “the other guys”. Their policies or procedures kept them from serving well and winning with clients.
Here’s an all-too familiar scenario. The person on the other end of line or behind the plexiglass partition, a person responsible for “serving customers” and resolving problems, says something to the effect of “No ma’am, I’m sorry, that’s just not our policy, or I can’t help you with that, or no we just don’t do things that way.”
If you’ve heard that before, then I imagine you probably didn’t feel well served or like your problem was even acknowledged, much less addressed. So, whatever happened to the idea of customer service? Well, it can quickly get overruled by processes.
In general, businesses should be trying to offer products and/or services that help to resolve the problems of others. That’s like Marketing 101, right? They should exist to make lives better, easier, and more enjoyable. But, it doesn’t always work out that way.
Feeling Stuck and Frustrated
How do you feel when you encounter policies and procedures that render that product or service useless to you? You might feel stuck or like things are beyond your control. Sure, no business can please everybody 100% of the time. However, feeling frustrated, with no appeal process or oversight, is definitely not where businesses want their clients.
Also, they’re likely to avoid using that business’ products or services in order to eliminate that frustration in the future.
Where Are Your Processes Unhealthy?
Now, let’s turn this table around and change our perspective a bit. Where could your policies, practices, and procedures be holding your capacity captive? One of the biggest reasons that your business gets stuck is that its processes are limiting your growth and ability to scale. It could also be keeping your team from doing more and succeeding!
So, it’s time to take a good look at how unhealthy policies could be holding your capacity captive.
I hope you enjoy this episode!
484 | Limiting Factors: Are Processes Holding Your Capacity Captive? P2
Chris LoCurto 0:00
how your business processes are holding your capacity captive that is coming up next.
Chris LoCurto 0:15
Welcome to the Chris LoCurto´s show where we discuss leadership and life and discover that business is what you do, not who you are. Welcome to the show, folks, I hope you're having a fabulous day, wherever you are. This is part two of an episode on the limiting factor of process. So if you didn't catch the first one, then you'll want to go back and listen to it. As it sets up the stuff we're talking about today. Now, we said that in part one, but it bears repeating. Again, I'm going to I'm going to repeat a lot of things from part one, too, and then turn it into what we're talking about today, the things that are holding us back. Repetition breeds confidence. So let's walk through this again, repetition, practice, and process all breeds familiarity and confidence. And this is both a superpower, as well as an Achilles heel. So your internal business processes could be the very thing that is tripping you, and especially your team up. And if it's tripping your team up, then I can promise you, it's most likely tripping up your customers or maybe even your vendors as well. So you know what it's like to be on the receiving end of a stagnant process, it feels like death, when you're hearing people saying, it's not my job, that's not our process, or I don't have the authority to make that decision. I think all of us have experienced that. And if you're anything like me, when I experience bad customer service, and that is absolutely customer service, then it tends to be used as a teaching tool for my team. I want my team to understand how we lead really well when it comes to process customer service, taking care of people serving people. I mean, it's in our mission statement.
So whenever I hear somebody say it's not my job, or if I see somebody say, you know, that's not our process, or I don't have the authority to make that decision, then I usually don't stop there. That's where pushing begins. One of the worst things you could do, as somebody who is one of my team members is telling me that something can't be done. It is funny to watch the veterans on the team, when a new person will say, well, we just can't do that. And they tend to just shake their head and then just watch me and watch my response. Because that's something that I don't respond to Well, I don't like people telling me that something can't be done. Show me all the perspective and all the different ways that you've tried to accomplish it. And even then I'm probably still going to try and find some way to accomplish the thing if it's important. Now, if it doesn't mean anything, no big deal. I'm not really concerned with that. But if it's something that we're trying to accomplish, if it's something that is customer service oriented, we're going to find a way, we're going to do something, right. The crazy thing is that is the type of stuff that is allowed in business after business after business. And those are all signs of unhealthy processes that have either not existed are not good, or they've become rigid and unfriendly. So when we come back how unhealthy processes are frustrating those you serve, as well as draining the potential from your team?
Joel Fortner 3:48
Hey, leaders, this is Joel Fortner VP of leadership development at Chris LoCurto. Company. I have some questions for you. Do you as a leader feel like you are caught up in a Crazy Cycle of stress and task that never ends week to week? Do you ever have to deal with tough conversations with team members? And you sit at home the next day the night before worried about how's it gonna go? What am I going to say? What are they going to say? Can I think fast enough on my feet? Is it going to be a total failure? Are you experiencing culture problems or that stuff that just breaks down trust and unity on your team? Well, if you're if you can relate to any of this, this is a pretty typical leadership story and situation. Here's the thing though it doesn't have to be that way. And we can help you solve these things. We can help you become the leader that solves these problems and leads 13th to greater success. I want to introduce you to the key leaders program. This is an ongoing leadership development program that gives you the lesson track coaching and accountability. You need to become the leader you can become to actually implement what you're actually learning in this program. Things Fall Apart. Without great leadership and intentionality, if you want to solve the problems that are holding you back from being a great leader, we can help you with this program get in touch Joe, chrislocurto.com.
Chris LoCurto 5:14
All right, in this second episode, we're talking about how unhealthy business processes can create the rigidity and the in flexibility that hold your business back. And again, as I say this, I don't want you to just focus on your team. Think of being the client. And one of the things we talk about all the time. And if you're not doing this, you need to do this. And, you know, if you're new, then you may not have heard me say this before, you need to walk through your buying process, you need to walk through what it's like to experience purchasing something from your company, right, or even experiencing your team, a service, a product, whatever it is, what you will discover immediately is if you have great processes in place, if you have bad processes in place, if you have no processes in place, if your team is good to work with if they're a pain in the butt to work with. If you walk through that you will very quickly discover a whole myriad of either good things, or bad things, or maybe combination, you know, could be that they're doing something's great and something suck out loud. Part of that will be processes. is the process of the sale is that is the purchase process, from the clients perspective, a good one? Is it a bad one? Is it lacking? Is it too much? Are we drawing people in or chasing them off, so make sure that you're doing it? Now with that being said, again, it's important to repeat what we said in the first episode from James clear, you don't rise to the level of your goals, you fall to the level of your systems. And this is especially true, one serving clients and creating great customer experience.
So imagine you're standing in the line at a government office, or maybe you're on hold or waiting for the operator to talk to her manager about your problem or thing that you're experiencing. And the response is, I'm sorry, ma'am. But that's just not our policy, or you'll have to talk to someone else in another department. How many times have you ever gone to another department for the money to send you back to the same department? I can't help you with this. It's not my job. No, sir, I can't bring you an extra pillow for the overnight flight, you'll have to try back later. What's really being communicated in so many different ways is Go away. Don't bother me. That's not something I want to deal with. That's something I'm not going to take ownership for. That's something I'm not going to help you with. I'm going to pawn it off, I'm going to try and put something in place that stops you from asking me for help, right? Think about it. When processes suck, and team members suck, then you're probably not going to be served really well, you're not going to get good customer service. But folks, don't be surprised if you don't have good processes that you have not great team members operating. What do I mean by that?
The incredible thing of great processes and accountability is that it tends to chase away the people who aren't willing to do it. So if you have people that are willing to say any of those things that I just shared, that means you probably don't have good processes. And you probably don't even have great people working at the helm here, right are on the front lines. Because it's easy for me to continue to do a job turning people away telling him it's not my job telling him we don't do that whatever it is, you know, don't bother me go away. Because there's no accountability. You can have the world's greatest process. And if you don't have accountability, then I can keep violating the process as a bad team member, because nobody's coming along to hold me accountable. So the problem of process is what we're talking about. If and again, as I shared in the last episode, if information and communication are the lifeblood or the nervous system of an organization, then process and procedure are its spine giving it structures stability and allowing blood flow. So the opposite of this is also true. unhealthy, unexamined unadjusted processes and procedures are actually causing your structure to collapse. They are actually creating instability internally and externally. Think about that. And they're cutting off the flow of communication and information. And this is true, whether it's internally with the team or it's outwardly facing with your clients or even your vendors, right. It's cutting off the flow of communication and information. And any leader worth his weight understands how terrible that is. So when we come back, why process is so powerful, but often abused or misunderstood.
Joel Fortner 10:01
Hey, it's Joel Fortner. Here. I'm the Vice President of leadership development on Chris's team and I oversee our Next Level Mastermind business coaching program. Most business owners and leaders lack a clear path to succeed in business. They question whether the making the right decisions if they're focusing on the right things to really grow their business. If this is you, you need a coach in your life. coaches help you make better decisions, navigate uncertainty lead more effectively, and grow your business without sacrificing your life and your family. In their first year, our clients typically see an average of 67% increase in gross revenue, and an average of 138% increase in net profit and regained hours of time, our clients stay in the program for over three and a half years simply because of the results they get. So if you're ready to run your business at the next level, and see the growth you've been wanting, then visit chrislocurto.com/mastermind. Again, chrislocurto.com/mastermind today.
Chris LoCurto 11:03
So I said it before, I'll say it again, processes give form and structure to your organization. But it must remain flexible. Now I gave you this example last time about going to the chiropractor, right? Your spine gives you for your body form, structure and stability. But it's got to be adjusted frequently in order to stay flexible and have good blood flow. So you must review and optimize your processes frequently enough to allow for the flow of good information, communication and collaboration. Right? Let me say it again, you have to frequently enough now for some of you that may be every year. If things are changing consistently inside of your business, it might be every few months or a couple of times a year, right, I doubt that your process needs to be updated. And I'm speaking generally some of you may have this, but I doubt that most businesses need to really be reviewing and optimizing their processes every couple of months, I could be wrong. I could be wrong. But I think the bulk of you don't, there's probably a few of you out there that you do. So you need to make sure it's even more important that you make sure that you're doing that. But I love what Peter Drucker said, he said what gets measured, gets managed. So a big part of this reviewing this, this optimization is also throwing on top of it the accountability piece, right? Being able to measure is this working out, right? Is this doing what we want it to do? So let's spin that around for what we're talking about today. What isn't getting measured, assessed or evaluated in your business is getting mismanaged? Let me say it again. What isn't getting measured, assessed, or evaluated in your business is getting mismanaged. Now, you can't possibly expect excellence, if you haven't invested the time, the care the attention that you should to properly assess, optimize and improve your processes. Right. This is a big piece of the week that we spend with an entire business leadership team during strap plant in our offices, it's a huge investment on their part, it's a huge investment on our part. And a big piece of that is making sure that we are reviewing and optimizing adjusting, measuring the daylights putting accountability to processes. But this tends to be the only time that most if not all businesses actually spend time discovering what needs to be adjusted, what needs to change what they need to do differently, how they might need to make their business operate better. And it is only one piece of what we discover one piece, but it tends to be big.
For some companies, it's just minor adjustments, minor optimizations, but for most companies, it's actually profound how much they don't have in place yet. And when they do, how much it's going to affect what they do with excellence and how great it's going to make their business operate. So leaders, when you see that there is a breakdown in information, a breakdown in communication and breakdown in collaboration. The first place you should look to is your processes. Is it time to review and optimize the processes when you notice frustration from clients when the customer experience is impeded when your team isn't functioning like a well oiled machine. It most likely has something to do with the maintenance level of your processes, or the fact that they don't exist. So remember this much of a leaders capacity is held captive by their current habit. and processes. So if you as a leader will review and optimize your processes, whenever you see the warning signs I mentioned, then your team will thrive and your customers will be served with excellence. Well folks, that's all the time we have for today. I hope this information has helped you. We want you to take this information, change your leadership, change your business, change your life, and join us on the next episode.