Truth is Greater Than Fiction
Unpredictable events can make for a great movie—BUT, THEY CAN BE DISASTROUS FOR A BUSINESS!
What does this have to do with systemic success? Maybe nothing, maybe EVERYTHING!
It all depends on whether you embrace FICTION or TRUTH.
Truths about businesses:
- Mistakes will occur, costing time and money
- Employees will get frustrated and walk out the door
- Miscommunications will happen among staff, customers and vendors
- Sales will go up, and sales will go down
- Equipment will break down and become obsolete at some point
- Material and other costs will rise
- Owners, managers and employees will at times work very long and stressful hours
- Customers will complain and will stop doing business with your company
- A competitor somewhere will be cheaper and promise more
- Sickness will spread like wildfire among staff just when business is booming
- Storms will knock out phones or utilities, sooner or later
- Etc., etc., etc. (got that from The King and I movie)
Fiction or myths about businesses:
- People are human and can't help making mistakes
- Our type of production is too messy to keep work areas clean and clutter free
- Salespeople can't be held accountable for what they do outside the office
- Employees will quit if required to follow strict procedures
- People who make the least mistakes are the most technical and talented
- Quality control systems are for big companies only
- We don't have time to write and implement an operations manual
- She's a great manager although her desk looks like an overturned trash bin
- You need a manager constantly overseeing people in order to keep them on task
- You don't need good systems, you just need good people
- Continual improvement is only for big car manufacturers
- Etc., etc., etc.
If you believe the above list of FICTION, and allow it to define your business, then in this case "FICTION IS GREATER THAN TRUTH" and nothing will change—that's just the way it is—end of statement, period. I won't argue with that logic, as I've found it pointless. I've seen that movie before, too. And it doesn't end well!
Philip Beyer, founder/president of Ebiz Products LLC and founder of Beyer Printing Inc. in Nashville Tenn., is a chronic entrepreneur, business systems analyst and consultant. Author of "System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business" and recipient of an InterTech Technology Award for the design and development of System100 business process management software. Beyer speaks to business owners across the country on how to bring lean, sustainable order to their businesses. Contact him at (615) 425-2652.