By Mark H. Davis
President & Senior Consultant
Here’s a hint: it’s not what you think.
- It’s not price. That’s too transparent.
- It’s not branding. That’s too trendy.
- It’s not location. That’s too transient.
It’s your process.
Process = Personality
Your process sets you apart from your competition. Your process defines the customer experience. Your process defines who you are. It is the manifestation of your great ideas for serving the people you care about. It is you.
Your process is how you get work done. It either saves or wastes your money all day long, every day, as long as you live. Done right, your process will produce a consistently healthy bottom line. Done wrong, eventually you will have to fire yourself.
Process = Personal
Your process is more personal than even your people. It tells people whether you respect them or not, if you take them seriously enough to think things through, plan and execute. It is the manifestation of your decision – conscious or not – to take people for granted or treat them as jewels.
A bad process is more insulting to them than a rude waitress, because it has the air of a corporate decision to run rough-shod over their needs. They can dismiss a rude waitress with the wave of a hand or a request to be moved; on the other hand, a bad process has no remedy, other than eating elsewhere … after wasting their time and money. People take that personally.
Process = Press
A thoughtful, efficient, consistent process is the best advertising. The opposite is the worst.
When you experience a great process – aka customer experience – you tend to walk away from those encounters with high praise on your lips. You tell others. You marvel at the genius of its architects. You recommend that doctor, that car dealership, that restaurant or that barber shop to others without reservation.
On the contrary, you rail against a bad process like burned popcorn. If someone burns the popcorn, you (and everybody else) will bash them. You will spend the next few hours complaining about how bad it smells. You will mourn the lost pleasure of eating fresh popcorn, the aroma that spills from the bag, the buttery powder that would have had you licking your fingers for hours. A few burned kernels will explode into litanies of “I hate it when people do that” and the whole day will be ruined. Recovery will be slow. The perpetrator will be banned from the break room for a week.
Process = Proof
Don’t just tell people that you care about them. Show them with a process that understands their needs, accommodates their schedules, thinks ahead, and prevents problems rather than causes them.
You say you’re the best. Now prove it with your process.
For more “waste-whacking” insights,
check out our e-book
Go Get Your Muda!