What has reorganising a check-in queue got in common with updating your business systems?
Quite a bit as it turns out.
I was travelling last week. I love the excitement of reaching new destinations, watching the interactions between people, guessing travellers’ stories and backgrounds wondering what new adventures they will encounter.
While standing in the check-in queue, I watched a staff member adjusting the cordon setup, creating a makeshift maze that unwittingly corralled five passengers, including me. Being so focused on re-arranging things, she had not noticed her mistake. As we chuckled at this unwarranted imprisonment 😆 a realisation hit me - she just unintentionally broke a perfectly functioning system. We were queuing up efficiently, so there was no need for intervention.
I’ve seen this happen in businesses too. A new app comes along, or a new contact tells you about this latest must have feature of System XYZ. It’s easy to get curious and excitedly start tinkering - I have done it myself. But before you do, it may be worth considering whether or not the current system/process works for you. So here are 3 signs of a well-functioning system/process:
1️⃣ Fluidity in Movement
A smoothly system has a natural flow. Tasks progress seamlessly, with minimal bottlenecks or delays.
2️⃣ Consistency in Results
Reliable outcomes are also signs of an effective system. When processes consistently yield the desired results, it's a sign that the system is on track.
3️⃣ Minimal Intervention Required
A well-oiled system requires minimal tinkering. If it's running smoothly without constant adjustments, it's working well.
Next time you might be tempted to go update your systems and processed and potentially cause unintended outcomes, check if it's working first. Sometimes the best approach is to let a well-functioning system do its job.
What's your most memorable 'system-breaking' moment?
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