WHAT YOU FEEL: the idea of “slowing down” to put in place process seems absurd to you
PERSPECTIVE: Many entrepreneurs view process as a dirty word reserved for General Electric and Six Sigma classes. To the contrary, process is the fuel that energizes progress. Throughout our day, we get questions like “how are we going to price our solution for the RFP?” What if the response was “let’s address this in the weekly pricing meeting. Please send an e-mail to all attending so we can be prepared to discuss.” The alternative might be twenty emails, texts and phone calls that chews up an hour without a resolution. Process maximizes your scarcest resource – time. You hear stories about this in the fashion world with the launch of a clothing line. Each year, fashion brands release their collections to the world. Consider these two paths with the same set of resources and amount of time:
- In the first scenario, the organization puts together the collection for the “big meeting” with the President a month before the launch event to give her opinion. What results is a scramble to marry the President’s vision with the collection that the team spent the last six months arranging.
- In the second scenario, the team holds weekly meetings in which the President is presented with concepts that are refined over months leading up to the event. If the President cannot attend, her deputy attends and provides updates to the President and provides feedback each week. These weekly meetings often involve changes in direction and iteration of design concepts. By the time of the meeting one month before the event, only final tweaks of the designs are being done.