Those whom you look up to as almost God-like in their productive output—people like Richard Branson, Bill Gates, Warren Buffet, and others—have figured out how to be nearly all entrepreneur. They don’t spend their time managing or supplying the productive output. This explains how Branson is able to operate more than 400 companies under his Virgin brand. They operate 100 percent without him. As our client Desirae says, what a dream. Are you paying attention? This raises the bar.
For clarity, the entrepreneur supplies vision and direction. The manager supplies order and systems. The technician supplies the output. At the start of every new venture, you’ll need to be the technician. You are supplying the majority of the productive output. As quickly as you possibly can, graduate to the role of manager and create brilliant systems. Systemize everything. Business will rob you of joy if you don’t. Every hour you spend building a system gives back countless hours. Systems can eliminate the need for your direct involvement and cut the demand on your time by at least half. Do I have your attention yet?
At least 40 percent of every work day consists of recurring tasks. You can systemize how you blog, promote videos, prepare for meetings, run a meeting, set up conference calls, process your email inbox, and manage your social media. The more systems you create, the more time you create. You literally compress time. Quantified 20-year quantum leaps become possible.
Getting small business owners to actually create systems—a book of systems—can be challenging, to put it mildly. We’re in the process of franchising one of our clients as I write this, one of the many business growth acceleration strategies we help our clients deploy. She has operated five cupcake stores for over five years. She’s the perfect person and has the right story—people don’t buy a product or service, they buy the story—to create a national and global brand. Franchising has forced her to create more than a hundred systems in a hurry. She is graduating from manager to entrepreneur in an entirely new way. Perhaps we should all go through the process of franchising to expedite the transition from manager to entrepreneur.
I am a huge fan of kaizen as I grew up in Japan.
As a teenager I had the opportunity to work with Toyota (Toyota Production System), Suzuki, Yamaha, and many others. This was my introduction to kaizen. Kaizen—a Japanese word—simply means “change for better.” It doesn’t mean “continuous”, although it is typically used to mean continuous improvement. It refers to any improvement, one-time or continuous, large or small.
Kaizen is a daily process. The purpose is greater than simple productivity improvement. Its purpose is to humanize the workplace, remove overly hard work (“muri”), spot and eliminate waste in business processes, and increase productivity.
Kaizen 12™ is what I think of as the new and modern kaizen. Its goal is to generate total quality management around The 12 Practices™ and free human efforts through leveraging machines and computing power to improve productivity.
CEOs must learn to engage the entire company in the successful implementation of Kaizen 12™. You may want to start with getting everyone to sign a Personal Contribution Document. The System of Everything, like the Internet of Everything, enables the entire company to exchange data. Some CEOs will no doubt read this and see “things” and “humans” embedded with electronics, software, sensors, and connectivity throughout the entire business.
First, get your managers and the right people to commit to 12 hour-long meetings a week to implement, optimize, and expand the 3 Ps (planning, procedures, and policies). Eliminate or modify outdated policies. Track, then adjust. Your Kaizen 12™ Book is your Operations Manual. Create it. Use it. Master it. Systemize and optimize everything with a view towards 10x growth.
Second, train your team aggressively. Make it exciting. The winners of tomorrow will be the companies that train best. Introduce higher and higher standards.
I may need to introduce the Justus Prize. Sorry Dr. Deming.
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