Letting Process Kill Progress

Processes are crucial for the overall integrity of a business, but at what point do processes hinder or even kill the potential for progress? In my time as a digital marketing strategist, I’ve seen countless businesses get in the way of themselves so much that they end up failing. Sadly, this is a mistake that even the most seasoned business experts make. From micromanagement to an absolute lack of management, it’s easy to get in the way of your own business’s overall success and growth.
 
“We agree completely that micromanagement is a big mistake. It diminishes people’s self-confidence, saps their initiative, and stifles their ability to think for themselves. It’s also a recipe for screwing things up—micromanagers rarely know as much about what needs to be done as the people they’re harassing, the ones who actually do it.” – Larry Bossidy and Ram Charan

So what can you do to not fall victim to this seemingly endless routine businesses face? 

1. Evaluate Processes. If your staff is following outdated or complicated processes to do simple tasks, it’s more than likely hindering or killing their creativity and growth. Take a step back and evaluate your personal processes and take the time to understand the processes your staff is following. Find ways to simplify and improve at any cost. 

2. Trust Your Staff. As we all know, there’s a huge difference between a boss and a leader. Picture a coach trying to jump into the middle of a game…doesn’t work, right? Be a leader. Applaud your team from the sidelines and guide them when necessary. Nothing stifles growth and creativity quite like micromanagement. 

3. Be a Jury – Not a Judge. If you hold a meeting with the intent of generating new ideas, being creative, or building your team – do not (and I repeat) DO NOT use this time to instantly question those ideas. This signals to your staff that their ideas are invalid or are being overheard. This will prevent your employees from voicing their ideas moving forward and inevitably kill growth and progress. 

4. Empower Employees Without Permission. Giving your staff creative control over a project or client is empowering for them. Having that employee require approval for their creative ideas through multiple people is not. Trust that your staff is capable of making the right decisions both logistically and creatively. If mistakes are made, correct them – but do not assume the worst every time you loosen your grip on those beneath you. 

Processes and progress can work hand in hand, finding that balance is crucial to the successful growth of any company. 

“Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power.”