Does your business work like clockwork or does it feel disorganized, complicated and like you’re just might be throwing money away because you have no idea whether you’ll see a return on investment? If that’s you – you aren’t alone. Today we’re chatting about how to create workflows so that you can streamline your business systems, eliminate the overwhelm, and show up as the professional that you are. If that’s something that interests you, then let’s get started.
Links for This Episode
- Enroll in the Mama Business Blueprint
- Schedule your Mama Business Strategy Session
- Grab your Mama Business Task Hub
Podcast Episode Recommendations
- #82: Systems or Goals: Which One Matters Most for Your Life and Business?
- #76: 3 Reasons to Choose Long-Term Strategy over Instant Wins in Business
- #64: Are Your Business Systems Ready for Growth? 3 Ways to Know
- #46: Streamline Your Online Business: 3 Templates To Create ASAP for Business Growth
Streamline Your Systems Today [Part 1]: How to Create Workflows for Success
You know how it feels when you’ve put a good process in place and it’s finally working for you? It could be the schedule that you’ve put together that gets you to the gym without fail each and every day. OR maybe it’s the Sunday routine you have that allows you to have ready to eat food all week long. OR possibly it a cleaning schedule that has you knowing exactly what to do each day to maintain an organized and laundry-basket free home. Is that even a thing? I really don’t think so, but my guess is that you get the picture I’m trying to instill. The freedom that comes with knowing that something just happens at the right time, in the right place, because you have a system in place.
And the one area that I see this really neglected is within our businesses. Think about your own business – does it work like clockwork? Do you show up to your desk and your computer each day knowing exactly what to expect and exactly what to do next? Do you know what requires your attention specifically and what is the responsibility of someone else? OR, is it more likely that when you show up you spend half of your time wondering which platform to use for what or what contract to send to your new client or where you even stored that contract or form to begin with?
If you find yourself in the second category – just know that you aren’t alone. This is something that clients come to me to solve – so I hear it all of the time. More often than not the reasoning behind this is simple:
- You don’t know what systems to use, or – Streamline Your Systems Today [Part 2]: How to Choose The Best Systems for You
- You don’t understand how to get your systems to work together, or – Streamline Your Systems Today [Part 3]: How to Connect Your Tech Stack
- You don’t have clarity around what you need your systems to do for you. – Streamline Your Systems Today [Part 1]: How to Create Workflows for Success
And each of these are predicated upon knowing and having clarity around what you need your systems to do for you and your business.
So today I’m going to walk you through my process for getting that clarity and then in the next two episodes, we’re going to talk about the choosing the right systems for you – based on the clarity you get today – and understanding how to get your systems to work together. Just a little heads up, the work we do in this episode will be something we build on in the next two, so I definitely recommend paying attention and doing the homework. Remember – action is where the dreams turn into the reality – and if you want the reality to be systems that ACTUALLY work for you – then this action-filled episode is exactly what you need.
Alrighty, let’s jump in.
What is a workflow and why do you need one?
So, when it comes to getting clarity around what you need your systems to do for you, you need to create a workflow. Now, don’t get bogged down in the terminology here, because while the idea of creating a workflow might bring up thoughts of charts and graphs and all kinds of things, in it’s simplest form, a workflow is just the steps you take to complete a task. It’s like a to-do list, but on steroids because, if implemented correctly it gets you HUGE results. At least that’s the way I like to think about.
And the problem with not having a workflow in place or at least well thought out before you start putting systems in place is that you’ll be piecing random things together that might not actually be necessary. And that’s when it starts to feel disorganized and complicated and like you’re throwing money in the toilet because you can’t see the return on your investment. Not knowing what your exact process should be will likely result in either:
…you having too many programs that maybe even overlap OR
…you wasting precious time doing everything by yourself without any automation in place or doing things that a system you already pay for could be doing for you.
None of that offers the best opportunity for you to show up and be successful in your business dream, right?
So, what do we do instead? Well, we get really clear on our workflows and I’m going to share exactly how I suggest doing this.
How to Create Workflows for Success
STEP 1: First, I want you to get out a few sheets of paper. I prefer to do this by hand. And, I think that there’s a lot of merit to that, to taking a step away from your computer (maybe even your desk space entirely) and letting all of the thought process just be that. Don’t get bogged down in how pretty it looks. In fact, make it messy if you need to, okay?
STEP 2: Once you have your paper in place, I want you to think about which areas of your business need a process in place. You might choose to put each one at the top of a different sheet of paper. Sure, some of them might have overlap and we will definitely take a look at that in the next episode in this series, but for now, it’s will be helpful to see them laid out individually. Two that I highly recommend you focus on include client projects and content creation. And keep in mind that if you have different types of client projects or services or even courses, that you should lay out each of those as separate workflows.
STEP 3: Now that you know which areas of your business require workflows, it’s time to actually break it down into tasks.
For client projects, you might consider what the steps are to get a potential lead from a place where they make an inquiry about your services to them completing your coaching process or getting their done-for-you service package completed. For example, your workflow might start with a sign up form asking for more information, you may need to review that sign up form, send them an email to schedule an appointment with you, and so on and so forth. No detail is too small, because when you know all of these details, you’ll be able to clearly suss out which systems are necessary for your business.
In the case of content creation, you might consider what the steps are to get a piece of content from idea form to published and shared across all of your distribution platforms. Coming up with the idea, determining your SEO keyword, creating the actual piece of content, editing the content, uploading the content to whatever platform it needs to go on, writing the email to your list announcing that content, sharing that content on social or wherever else you are sharing your stuff – all of those things – and probably a few more should be part of your workflow.
And while I’m not going to get into the nitty gritty of them, you might also have workflows for employee onboarding, managing sales of products, product launches, among others, so look at every area of your business and be specific – what is necessary in order to complete that task?
Take Action: Create Workflows for Success and Streamline Your Systems
And that brings us to the action part of this episode and like I said at the beginning, we all know that action is where the dreams turn into the reality.
Now that we understand how to create workflows, today’s action steps are these:
- Determine what areas of your business need workflows.
- List out all of the steps from start to finish for each of those areas.
Remember don’t hold back. The more you can put into place now, the better off you’ll be in the future. And, I know – it might seem like a lot of work at this moment, but if you take the time to do this work now, I know that you’re going to save yourself so much time, money, and – quite honestly – overwhelm by making this a priority. So, don’t wait any longer. Put something else on the backburner for a minute and let’s get you organized. The future you will thank you.
And mama, I just want you to know you aren’t alone in this. If you need additional support laying out your workflows or getting your systems up and running, that’s exactly what I’m here for. Head to sarahbrumley.com/services and let’s get you the clarity you need to build the business of your dreams.
Whatever you decide mama, just know that I’m cheering you on! You’ve got this! Have an amazing day and I’ll chat with you again next time.