How to Create Organized Business Systems Like A Boss
14 min read
If you are an entrepreneur or solopreneur, what does your daily routine look like?
Do you have systems and processes set up to smoothly rotate from one task to another?
Are you hopping from task to task, unsure of what you should be doing at any point in time?
Not sure which task to complete today, and hoping that you’re working on the right thing?
Are you wanting to scale your business bigger, but you can’t because you seem to be spinning your wheels, feeling like you can’t get traction?
If you are any of those things, you will benefit tremendously from this blog post.
How to Organize Business Systems in 5 Simple Steps
If you’re like how I used to be, you may feel like one of these:
- You feel like if you stepped away from your business for even a few days to go on a vacation that everything would just collapse?
- You’re allergic to most structure, and so, you’d prefer to have an automated system that tells you exactly what you need to do with very little hand-holding of your schedule?
- You get heart-palpitations just thinking of the amount of work you need to accomplish this week/month/year?
I gotchu, babe!
This post will outline exactly the steps you need to do!
Albeit you’ve heard the good ol’ “work smarter not harder” advice.
It sounds great in theory, but how exactly do you do that?
This post will help you create systems and put them in place so you can be less overwhelmed and focus more on getting the work done that you love!
Why do you need business processes?
Systems allow you to delegate the most important tasks while you are away on that glorious vacation you’ve been waiting for! You can even set up your entire business to run without you (which should be the goal)!
If you want to scale your business, you need to fire yourself as soon as possible.
So why do we need processes exactly?
- It clears your mind from jumbled overwhelm
- You always know what you should be doing next
- You don’t feel guilty for not wearing all of the entrepreneur hats at once
- If you have a difficult task that you hate doing, it simplifies it for you and makes it easier to complete
- You can also simply hand it off to someone and outsource that dreaded task because you have step-by-step processes written down
- Processes help you make sure you are doing everything that you should be doing, and nothing falls through the cracks
- Documenting processes creates more room in your brain for other, bigger birds-eye-view tasks of your business – so you can be the CEO!
If you have a task that you always dread doing – this is the perfect task to create a system around.
“I hate writing blog posts! I look at that damn blinking cursor in my blank word doc and just want to close my laptop and walk away!”
Create a structure that you can follow. Create a list of resources to help you brainstorm – or a swipe file, if you will. The next time you go to write a blog post, you’ll already know exactly what to do or say, and the words will flow onto the page like a summers day breeze!
Not to mention that if you have broken the word “blog post” down into super tiny itty bitty baby steps, it will be so much easier to breeze through.
Here’s what it would look like:
Decide on topic
Write out 5 possible post titles
Check against Coschedule Headline Analyzer
Choose final post title
Write out what you know about the topic already
Create an outline
Let post breathe for at least a few hours to one day
Re-read post and edit
Go back and read post – final
Add text excitement (bold, italics, etc)
Choose images from stock photos
– One headline image
– One Pinterest image
– One Facebook image
Insert images into post
You get the idea! Do a ton of little tiny steps, and you know exactly what to do.
This really works to eliminate floundering and procrastination – try it!
Some more examples of business systems:
- Filing taxes
- How to deposit or withdraw from the business bank (for future employees)
- Goals and metric tracking
- How to purchase something for the company
- Tracking mileage and business expenses
- How to hire someone
- How to fire someone
- Performance reviews
- Pay rates and scales
- Training manuals
- Tracking employees progress, pay rates, reviews, etc
If you source for products or for leads to call, or even just bloggers to contact, you do some sort of sourcing process.
- Find leads
- Contact leads
- Rinse & repeat
- Your lead pipeline
If you’re selling anything, you must do some customer servicing.
- Tracking Reimbursements
- Tracking and performing returns
- Tracking sales
- Editorial calendar
- Creating on-brand images
- Posting schedule
- Tracking metrics
- How you share and automate posts each month
- Going Live on social media
Content Marketing and Blogging:
- How to create a post (and templates to choose from to speed up your writing!)
- Content schedules
- Youtube schedule
- Writing Youtube scripts
- Editing Youtube videos
- Writing newsletters (and templates to choose from!)
- Goal setting for the month, quarter, and year
- Analysis of the previous month, quarter and year
- 12-week year plans (if you’ve read the 12 week year)
About your systems:
- These are always going to be live documents. You want to make sure that you are constantly checking, updating, and improving your systems for efficiency whenever you see the opportunity, as you are working through them.
- Don’t make sure it’s 100% perfect before you continue, but just get it down, and go from there!
- The hardest thing for some entrepreneurs is letting go of the control. After all, no one will run your business better than you, right? However, you need to let go, and trust the systems that you’ve built are going to sustain the business and help it grow, so that you can focus on more important, bigger tasks to improve the business.
- In fact, the better you write out your systems and keep them updated, the better your business will run – and that is something I feel strongly about! Going in depth, step-by-step, is going to ensure no one makes mistakes, and there’s no questions about what must be done.
- Once you get some systems in place and turn them over to your employees or anyone you work with to look them over, have them add and takeaway what they feel they need to see fit.
- Make sure that it’s readable and anyone substituting can come in at any point and start doing the task, literally step-by-step.
- Note that there is a difference between a recurring task would be a guest post, because you will have multiple guest posts, where you can follow the same process.
- A one-time task would be a specific guest post that needs particular images or wording requested from the other person.
- We’re only wanting to document the recurring tasks. In your final systems, you will fill in any one-time tasks as you work onto a to-do list.
How to Create Systems In Your Business:
So we’ve learned why we need systems, and we’ve got some ideas as to what systems and processes we need to make. Let’s get started!
What you’ll need:
- A software to write out your systems – I recommend Process Street, Asana, Trello, Google Docs, or Word
- A place to back up your processes – all online systems are already backed up. If you use Word, make sure to make copies elsewhere, like in your Dropbox folder.
- A software to take screenshots or videos of you doing the work – I recommend Loom for videos and Greenshot for screenshots. Both of these are free!
- A giant cup of coffee!
1 | Start Making Lists of the Processes You Need
First, you will want to start by writing down all the systems you need to create. Using the list above, brainstorm any other processes you do that aren’t listed there.
Make sure to include only tasks that are recurring. Any tasks that aren’t occurring can go in a Trello folder or on your to-do list to get done.
Start with your daily routine.
What do you need to complete every day?
Then, start writing a list of weekly tasks you need to do.
And then, monthly tasks.
I would also do quarterly tasks such as taxes or goals for the quarter
And finally, your yearly tasks (again, taxes, and goals – those pesky taxes!)
This is going to take a while, so I would block out half of a day to get started on this.
Once you’ve written down the main buckets of processes, you can be done for the day!
We will fill in the rest over the next couple of weeks.
2 | Write out each step in your processes over the next few weeks
Next, after writing down the majority of your tasks, take the next two weeks to fill in the blanks until you have each step written down.
To start this process, put a bright colored post it note right next to your computer screen that says “Is what I’m working on right now a process?”
Start writing down your daily tasks as you do them. It will take time, but you only really have to create the main structure once, and after that, you can simply update and improve.
You don’t have to write in those step-by-step processes quite yet, but after this step you should have something like the blogging process above for writing a post.
3 | Flush out the tasks
After you have brainstormed the list of tasks you need to complete, you’ll need to start filling in with details, such as “place document in Dropbox folder here, titled with the date” with a link to the folder.
You want to be detailed enough that you can confidently hand over the business to someone else knowing that they have everything they need to successfully run it if you were to suddenly fall ill, or even if you were to sell the business.
Pro Tip: When you’re selling a business, no matter how big or small, they look for processes such as this!
If you use Process Street (which is what I recommend for all recurring tasks in my business), you want to include checklists, important notes, and many many screenshots. You can even use Loom or Screencast for Chrome to create videos and place them in there!
4 | Test it out
Hand it over to someone to see if they can complete a task without your help.
Try it out yourself to make sure the process doesn’t have any missing gaps.
If you have a virtual assistant or team member, or hey, even a friend, make sure they can complete the tasks themselves, as well.
Now, I recommend living with these systems for a few days, and make sure you’re using them.
It’s tempting to not use them, but you don’t want to do it without your list unless you know your process very very well. If you start skipping steps, and you have an employee, they will notice you skipping steps, and start to do the same.
You also don’t want to forget an important step and harm your own work!
Live with it for a while, and adjust these as you go. Remember, they’re live documents!
5 | The Secret to Scaling: Automate your Business with Processes and Workflows
Now that you’ve been able to at least make a list of all the tasks you do each day, week, month, etc, can you see a bird’s eye view of all of them?
Can you use Zapier, Butler for Trello, or any other tasks to automate any of these tasks and eliminate mouse clicks? Make sure to limit the amount of software you use to avoid confusion for your employees.
The more you can automate, the better your business will grow, and the more time and money is saved for you.
How exactly can we do this?
We start by asking a few questions:
- Can any of your business tasks be automated using systems or software that you currently don’t have?
- Can you outsource for less money than if you were to do it yourself (aka, your dollars per hour)?
- Do you still need the task to complete your workflow or is it ‘busy work’?
This is also a great time to go over the current software that you have and audit it:
- Is it still meeting your needs?
- Is there better software out there now that might cost less?
- Is the current software subscription you’re working really freeing up time for you?
- Is there a better software out there that might also be less expensive?
The Ultimate Guide to Writing Business Workflows and Processes
If you’re ready to take back control of the chaotic confusion of running your biz, it’s time to get organized.
I promise you – if you spend the time to do this, you’ll save yourself HOURS of time later.
It’s well worth your time to invest in your business, especially if you are overwhelmed right now or need clarity!
And the best part: it’s SO easy! It takes time, but this is a super simple process, and I guarantee it will work for you!
The secret to getting clarity is to write things down and see it from a bigger picture. Writing processes allows you to do just that!
Being organized with workflow and processes does so many things:
- From keeping you in line and focused
- To improving your productivity
- Relieving the stress off of your brain instead of trying to keep track of everything there is to do
- Setting standards for your business to move forward
- Spotting problems from a mile away
- Seeing your business from a birds-eye-view
- You no longer have to think of exactly what to do, because all of that thinking is done for you – just follow your checklist!
Then to continue growing, you will automate your tasks using software that works and is customized for your business, leaving you time to focus on more important tasks such as brainstorming your next marketing campaign or launching that additional product that will ultimately help your bottom line.
Copying data or sending the same emails won’t help you do that.
And you now know that you need business processes in order to grow and scale your company, delegate and relinquish control of the biz to a future employee, allowing you to bask in your hard work and efforts – and the many hours of coffee you’ve put in :p
Did you follow this process? How did it work for you? Do you have any other questions? I want to hear from you!
Want to come back to this later? Pin it to your Pinterest boards to save for later!
Join the Hidden Gem Newsletter!
Join our mailing list to receive the latest news on the blog, along with exclusive content sent directly to your inbox!