Create Predictable Success with Systems
Do you ever wonder how a restaurant goes from a local treasure to a worldwide franchise? How a sport can change overnight with a new move? The secret behind these successes isn’t so much a secret – it’s the result of reliable, predictable systems.
Using systems, not only can you create success, you ensure that success is repeatable and can scale.
Models are all about providing a framework of best practices that are proven to get us from point A to point B as quickly and efficiently as possible. Systems are the methods we use to set those models in motion. Systems take away guesswork and ambiguity. If a model works, you need a system to keep execution of that model consistent.
Systems Are Simple
Some people make the mistake of thinking that systems, and therefore success, must be complicated to be effective. The opposite is often true.
Whenever you’re doing something, you’re likely using a system that you’ve created. You simply need to be aware of it. For example, do you lead generate on Wednesday mornings? Do you decide who to call in your database by moving through the alphabet two letters at a time? Congrats, that’s a system! (In fact, that’s the DTD2 system.)
Whenever you take a process out of your head and document it, you’re creating a system. Simple as that.
Go Deep to Go Far
So, if you write down a list of all the actions you take when you’re performing a task, you’ve created a system – but it’s a very basic one. Checklists are nice, but chances are that you’re going to need more than that to really capture what makes your business great.
For example, let’s say that you’re a successful real estate agent who has an administrative assistant and a transaction coordinator, but you’re wanting to increase your leverage. You believe that having a person on your team dedicated to creating leads, like an Inside Sales Agent (ISA), could be the difference between meeting the goals you set for the year and exceeding them.
Chances are, you wouldn’t just hand your ISA a checklist that says:
You would need to tell your new ISA a lot more than that. Don’t hang out at the surface; when you’re creating your systems, think “deep.”
Thinking “deep” might create a system that looks like this:
The difference here is rather than just expecting someone to understand what “lead generate” means, the documentation has broken down a successful call that results in generating a lead. Note, it also includes a step that protects the business from legal risk. That’s the kind of protection and consistency you get from creating a deep system. Don’t skimp.
Gary writes in The Millionaire Real Estate Agent that, “documentation does require some patience, persistence, and organization.” He advises enlisting the help of your first hire when creating your systems.
The reasons a first hire is great for documentation are two-fold. First, they have a fresh perspective. They don’t have the “curse of knowledge” that you do and will be able to ask questions and spot any omissions in your instructions. Secondly, you’re going to have to explain everything to your new employee anyway – why not just document it at the same time?
Even handier, MREA provides a model to help with your systems:
The Systems Documentation Model of the Millionaire Real Estate Agent, p. 244 of MREA.
As you’re pulling together your systems into your documentation, remember that effective systems are a process, not a single project. Your systems will evolve as you and your team innovate within your business and see the results of your efforts. You will likely notice more and more ways to go deep each time you have someone use your system – and each pass will make the system and its results stronger.
Conversely, if you write down your systems and suddenly feel overwhelmed – you can always streamline them. Your systems reflect how you do business, if you’re changing course or have decided an action isn’t worth the investment, make sure to subtract that from your documentation, too.
Your Tech Friend
Leverage isn’t just about people and systems; it also includes tools. There are many AI apps like Otter.ai that can transcribe your conversations, or you could use Loom or a Zoom video recording to capture training videos. The options are endless.
How have you documented your models and systems? Do you have any tips or tools to share that can help someone who wants to systematize their success? Let us know on our Facebook page and don’t forget to subscribe to our newsletter for more insights and deep dives.