What are Your Employees Really Doing?

If you were asked to write down what each person under your management does each day (or, let’s say, what they’re supposed to be doing)…could you do it?

You think so? Okay, could you write down HOW each of those employees does what they do, and how they interact with the tools you have provided them?

When I first tried to do that, I was shocked at how hard it really was. I would have said I knew the workings of our business inside-out. But, detailing what each employee actually does was more difficult than I ever imagined.

It’s been over 15 years since I have challenged myself that way, in order to create systems for my business; and it’s no surprise to me now when I see other business owners and managers, from a variety of industries, spending long tedious hours documenting the daily routine of just ONE key employee.

I challenge you to try it!

Select any one of your key employees to start with. Ask the employee to help you by writing down what they do on a normal day, from the time they walk in each morning, until leaving in the afternoon. Again, you will be surprised at WHAT they SAY they do.

Stay with me…there’s good reason for this exercise. In fact, gathering such information is a key FIRST step to dramatically reducing all forms of waste in your company!

Recently, an owner of a printing company, who had accepted the challenge, told me it took him and a group of employees literally all day to document the daily routine for just one department manager. To say the least, the owner was stunned at the time involved.

You may be thinking, “What’s the big deal? I can get JOB DESCRIPTIONS of our key positions from our industry association, or just download it online!”

Philip Beyer, founder/president of Beyer Printing and Ebiz Products LLC in Nashville, TN, is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant, author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business," and an InterTech Award recipient for the design and development of System100™ business process management software. Philip speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses.
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