Will Process Standardization Take Away Your Fluidity And Agility As An Organization?
Losing fluidity and agility is a common concern for service-based companies when standardizing and building expectations around their processes. They are worried that standardization might hinder them from serving their customers in the way they do best.
There is that fear that standardizing processes will take away the human element of the way they do their work which is what makes their company unique. But this is mainly due to the misconception that standardization’s purpose is to control how an organization does things.
The real purpose of process standardization
We standardize processes to deliver consistency — to make sure we provide the same experience the right way, every time. That does not mean we build compliance. The purpose of standardization is not to control like robots.
Within a process, what we want to standardize are things that are replicable. And we want to humanize the things that are not. For example, you can standardize how you respond to objections. Your pitch template and branding should always be the same. We only pull out the things that need to be standardized and leave the ones that don’t.
Standardization does not mean inflexibility
Standardized processes do not mean inflexible processes. In fact, standardization can often help organizations to identify areas of their processes that can be streamlined, leading to increased flexibility and agility.
Standardization involves defining best practices and creating a consistent way of doing things, but it does not mean that there is no room for flexibility or adaptation. Standardized processes can still be designed to allow for variation or modification based on changing business needs or customer requirements.
My sales process, for example, is well-structured and standardized yet I can still be fluid. If I recognize there is a need for another follow-up, I’ll do it. If I recognize there is a need to go deeper in one area, I’ll do it. I know where I can be agile, have autonomy and make better decisions.