Business process failure can be one of the most debilitating things an entrepreneur can face. It’s also surprisingly common: more than half of new businesses fail within their first year. Even if your business venture isn’t immediately threatening, there’s still a safety net in place to protect you from any future setbacks.
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Business process failure happens when processes within a company become ineffective, which hinders the company from reaching its full potential and operating at peak efficiency. The more processes that break down, the greater the chance that those individual processes will not be able to repair themselves again. To avoid business process failure, it’s necessary to understand where it comes from and how you can prevent it from striking your own startup.
What Causes Business Process Failure?
The first step to understanding how to avoid business process failure is to understand where it comes from in the first place. Essentially, business process failure happens when your processes break down. When a business process breaks down, the system that generates and manages all of the different tasks and resources within your company is also broken. If your process isn’t functioning as it should, you’ll have to find a way to correct it. In order for you, as the entrepreneur, to find this solution, your company will have to enter a state of crisis. During a crisis, the ability to act quickly becomes more important than the ability to assess things rationally. This is because the speed of decision-making becomes so crucial that it outweighs any other factors, like logic. Chances are that you and your team need to respond to customer demands more quickly than ever before. A business process failure can result from a number of different things, but they can be broken down into three major groups.
The process itself may be unclear, or it may be unclear to the team using it. When this happens, it can cause a process failure as employees might not know how to correct it. If a process is unclear, it’s easy for mistakes to be made, which can cause unwanted delays.
Inconsistent Application of Rules
Rules in any business process are meant to provide clear direction and prevent people from making mistakes. However, if the rules are inconsistent, they can also cause confusion. If team members aren’t sure when they’re allowed to make certain decisions, they’re not going to be able to hit their targets.
Misaligned Expectations Between Team Members
Last but not least, misaligned expectations between team members is a major cause of business process failure. When one person in a team has different expectations than the rest, they’re going to cause delays and end up wasting a lot of resources. To avoid this, it’s important to have clear expectations between all team members, especially when it comes to customers and their expectations. In order to avoid business process failure, it’s first important to learn where it comes from.
Identify How Your Processes Fail
If you want to avoid business process failure, the first step is to identify how your processes fail. It’s possible that some of your processes are already failing, but it’s also possible that you aren’t even aware of it yet. To identify how your processes fail, start by creating two lists: one of your weaknesses and one of your strengths. Once you’ve identified both of these, you can begin to see which processes fail within your company.
Create a Self-Testing Framework
The self-testing framework can be incredibly helpful in the debugging process of your processes. If you create a self-testing framework, you’ll be able to identify where your processes are failing, because you’ll be able to pinpoint the areas of your business that aren’t functioning properly. The self-testing framework should consist of a series of simple questions that pertain to your processes. These questions should be aimed at helping you detect where your processes are not working right.
Build in Daily Tasks That Can be Done On Demand
When designing your processes, it’s important to be mindful of the amount of work they require. If you find yourself overburdened by the amount of work your processes require, it’s important to create more efficient ways of working. One way to do this is to build in daily tasks that can be done on demand. These are small tasks that don’t require a lot of resources, which allow your team to hit their targets without needing to work very hard.
Limit The Exposure of your Team to New Users
The more your team is exposed to new users and situations, the harder it’s going to be for them to respond quickly when things go wrong. In order to respond quickly and effectively, your team needs to not be so anxious. To combat this, you should try to limit the amount of time your team is exposed to new users. Generally, you should try to put an end to this type of exposure as soon as possible, but you should try to stop it no longer than three times.
Encourage DevOps in the Workplace
Last, but not least, it’s important to encourage DevOps in the workplace. DevOps is a philosophy that encourages collaboration between software developers and system administrators. In a company that has implemented DevOps, developers and system administrators are working together to create software, rather than each team working independently. This results in more efficient use of resources and the ability to respond more quickly to changes.
Business process failure can be one of the most debilitating things an entrepreneur can face. It also surprisingly common: more than half of new businesses fail within their first year. Even if your business venture isn’t immediately threatening, there’s still a safety net in place to protect you from any future setbacks. The first step is to identify how your processes fail, and the second is to create a self-testing framework. With these two steps, you can create a framework that helps you identify your weaknesses and strengths. From there, you can work to create more efficient ways to work without being so overwhelmed by the workload. Finally, you can work to implement DevOps within your company.