Whoever Manages the Crisis Manages the Outcome
Think about this for a minute, “Whoever manages the crisis, manages the outcome.” In other words, when a crisis appears in business — and they will appear — somebody is responsible for overseeing it to resolution. Then what?
The person who usually manages a crisis in a small business is the owner, the BOSS.
Yep, the overly burdened owner frequently comes to the rescue. Make no mistake; they are responsible, although they may not have been directly to blame for the crisis.
Consider a statement often made by politicians, “Never let a crisis go to waste!” In their case, they usually initiate the crisis, then work to manipulate the outcome; all the while blaming the crisis on others.
In fact, that is precisely what we did to bring extreme order to our business, by never letting a crisis go to waste.
As a result, we reduced our waste by over 70%, by using every crisis to improve quality and service. In fact, we took advantage of every non-conformance, even the small ones.
We documented every crisis by determining the following:
- The Root Cause
- Personal Error or System Error
- Personnel Involved
- Personnel At Fault, if Applicable
- Total Cost in Dollars
- Total Time Wasted
- Personnel Whose Idea Resolved Future Re-occurrences, via Systems
- Systems Updated or Implemented to Ensure Crisis Doesn’t Reoccur
Getting back to politicians who cry, “Never let a crisis go to waste” — they’re generally not motivated to actually fix the problem, but often to use it otherwise to their advantage.
On the other hand, we as business owners have an obligation to fix every crisis, every non-conformance. As we are directly responsible to clients, employees, vendors, and others.
Let’s face it, whenever a crisis happens, we as owners pay the cost.
Systematically Managing the Outcome of a Crisis
Systems are the most important tool used by organized businesses, to bring extreme order to workflow and every phase of business.
The System Buster Locator, aka CAPA, is a system/tool for documenting those items listed above. This system is what I call the “secret sauce,” used by the most powerful businesses in the world to win market share over competitors by offering great quality and service.
Fact is, their SYSTEM MANAGES THE OUTCOME of every crisis, using them as an opportunity to continually improve operations.
For this reason, these world class businesses NEVER let a crisis go to waste. To stay on top, they relentlessly and continually pursue the ultimate goal of zero waste, zero defects, and zero crisis.
Did I mention? Great systems work!
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.