In a conversation this week with a colleague we discussed the importance of process in organisations and the need for carefully managed process life cycles. This includes very specifically the creation, documentation, deployment, refinement, and retirement of processes
He asked me why, in his experience, processes are not an area of focus for many businesses, whereas people are. I think the answer to this is that people are visible and processes generally are not.
Of course, both are important. In fact, to improve performance in their team, a great manager will keep an eye on four things:
- the budget
- the people in his Team
- their customers
- the processes that support the work that they do
Process in your End of Month Review
It is not uncommon to sit through End of Month Reviews that spend 65% or more of the time focusing on the first, 25% or more on operational issues (including customers) and the remainder on people. When the balance is adjusted, and Process is included, a fundamental shift occurs:
- keeping the processes relevant minimises operational issues
- meetings tend to have a bigger picture/ longer term focus which contributes to the consideration of the day-to-day operation needs.
Great processes form part of the Intellectual Property of Performance Focused Organisations, and I have experienced organisations where, when the Leadership Team begins to pay attention to and be excited about process, synergistic initiatives, not previously apparent, are found across the organisation.