In his book, the Checklist Manifesto, noted surgeon, Atul Gawande makes the case for a simple checklist to ensure that important safety steps in the operating room are followed by all, including the surgeon. His team identified three “pause points” (post-anesthesia, pre-incision, post-operation) and an accompanying checklist to reduce complications from surgery. His simple 90 second checklist was tested in 8 hospitals in different parts of the world. It reduced complications and deaths by a third at virtually no cost.
It’s important to note that a key component of the checklist is team engagement and communication. One surgeon (also a pilot) likened the process to a “cleared for takeoff” checklist focused on reducing infection, bleeding, unsafe anesthesia and anticipating the unexpected that might arise during surgery.
Getting any process right is a team effort. When it’s left to one person or department important steps are missed. A team effort creates clarity, understanding and buy-in to a completed, written process that is the result of everyone’s knowledge and expertise. Without a team effort to complete a written process, it’s very difficult to have the process “followed by all”.
So, have you AND your Leadership Team identified the 6 to 10 “Core Processes” that define your way of delivering consistent value to your customers? You can’t scale your business without well-defined, written processes that are followed by all. You can’t grow your business without the ability to replicate each customer’s great experience each and every time they do business with you.