Celebrate! 6 Tips To Optimize Work-Flow

In the USA and Canada this week we are celebrating national birthdays. Special events remind me of conducting a workflow analysis. Huh?

You see, when I used to work for government, part of my project portfolio included large scale special events: celebrations, festivals and public works projects for example. I would tell my teams, “if we haven’t attended the event in our mind 100 times in advance of the big day we will miss something.”

That same exercise in creative imagination is the approach that works best when undertaking a business workflow analysis.

If you are looking to discover the impact of a particular process, or to analyze if you have a gap on the team or resources, or looking to gain more efficiency, a business workflow analysis is just the thing. Any size business can benefit from artists to large scale corporations with multiple departments.

Here are 6 points to keep in mind:

  1. Set the time aside, adopt a positive and “nothing is sacred” attitude.
  2. Establish a desired outcome. Be ready to capture added benefits – you may begin with the goal of efficiency and uncover a star talent that’s been under-optimized or an overlooked customer segment
  3. Invite others to help you with the analysis. Front line team members who implement process will provide insights. An internal or external facilitator will help you see what you can’t and bring a neutrality to the conversation.
  4. Don’t approach the analysis as a blame game but as an opportunity to get better. Be honest about your intentions if cost-cutting is a desired outcome.
  5. Go through the process as a customer or user, step by step, do it again and again and be clear you have captured the level of detail you need. That level of detail depends on the desired outcome (strategic alignment, efficiency, business development, etc.)
  6. And celebrate! Use the analysis to celebrate what’s been done already and to celebrate the future.

Happy Canada Day and 4th of July!
Elizabeth Keurvorst manages Practical Coaching. She coaches leaders and teams to optimize their creativity and greatness. Invite her on the website or email  her to experience a personalized coaching conversation.