Why Employees Stop Using Company Procedures
When employees stop using company procedures without notice, owner frustration grows. Especially, after an owner painstakingly maps out various standard operating procedures in hopes of improving quality and service for customers.
To be sure, this lack of employee adherence to standards is, sadly, all too common in most small businesses.
The reason employees stop using company procedures is simple. There is NOTHING holding them accountable other than a reprimand here and there by management.
You can be sure; employee’s excuses are the same no matter the type of business and no mater the size of a business.
Consider this short list of excuses business owners hear daily:
- “I didn’t have time to fill out all that paperwork.”
- “No one else around here follows company procedures.”
- “Even the boss doesn’t follow his own company procedures, why should I?”
Not surprisingly, there are countless excuses for not adhering to company SOP’s – Standard Operating Procedures. However, the result of NOT using the company’s written procedures is also all too common, including:
- Recurring errors
- Production and service schedules running late
- Poor housekeeping
- Owners and management working long hours
- Employee miscommunications
- Supply bottlenecks
- Lost revenue (that could go toward employee raises, equipment upgrades, and continual business improvement for the benefit of all)
Does this have a familiar ring?
How to Hold Employees Accountable to Company Procedures
The fix for stopping the madness of non-compliance is quite simple. In fact, it’s what we’ve been preaching for years. SYSTEMS!
Once an owner maps out a process, procedure, or policy, etc., there must be more than constant nudging and reminding by management to keep everyone adhering to the systems.
The fact is, to hold employees accountable it requires another system! In short, a SYSTEM for follow-up is the “secret sauce.”
To be blunt, without this type of system correctly implemented, a business will NEVER operate with consistent quality, on-time delivery, and service.
How Do I Know?
Communicating with small business owners all over the world, we receive eye-witness reports concerning the devastating results of employee non-adherence to the company’s standard operating procedures.
Sadly, most small business owners never achieve their dream of a business operating without their constant supervision.
Did I mention this before? 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.