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Step 4: Put a continual improvement process in place

Step 4: Put a continual improvement process in place

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As promised, over the next 8 weeks, we’ll be sharing one small idea every week on small steps you can take, that don’t cost much and will result in a significant benefit to you, your business and your job.

Step 4 is: Put a weekly ‘Go the extra inch’ process improvement system in place

Ok, so we all know what continuous improvement is, but very few organisations have a regular and rigorous ‘process and behaviour improvement’ process in place.

But Rome wasn’t built in a day: it’s illogical to expect you to get everything right first time, and for everyone to behave like a model team automatically! Just like a champion athlete, you have to put the work in, and the ‘remarkable result’ is just the tip of the iceberg: the output of all the hard work that has gone before.

So, what are we suggesting, and what can you do? Here are the key steps:

  1. Identify the key steps in your customer journey
  2. Identify the key ‘customers REAL needs’ (see our last blog) at each of these steps
  3. Form distinct ‘continuous improvement teams’ to work on each area: these may be within a department or cross-department
  4. Meet regularly: we suggest weekly, and using the ‘Go the Extra Inch’ process (a link to how to do this is at the end of the blog), work on each process or behaviour, one at a time, step by step, in distinct teams to improve them continually, align them with your ‘Customer Focused Mission’ and ensure they deliver remarkably on the customers’ REAL needs.
    1. Use your feedback or weekly issues to identify one process or behaviour each week.
  5. Make sure you build in the following 2 KEY criteria into any action plan or process change:
    1. ‘Desired Results’: what are the key measurable outputs that this process or action is designed to achieve?
    1. ‘Accountability’: how will we measure them, how will we hold each other accountable, and when will we next review them?

(Without these, then any actions you do agree, may be unfocused and short-lived at best).

And remember: when you start anything new, it’ll be hard work: it won’t go smoothly to start, and you’ll want to give it up.

That’s exactly what separates the great athletes from the ‘also rans’: their ability to keep going, keep improving, and keep working on themselves, no matter how tough and awkward it is.

Here’s a link to a short explanation of the ‘Go the Extra Inch’ process and how to make it work.

Slow Selling is a worldwide not for profit movement for change in selling.

Our systems deliver peace of mind and confidence to caring managers who want to do the right thing and grow their business, without sacrificing principles or profit.

To find out more, please click here or email [email protected]

If you’d like some help in putting these ideas into practice, please join our mailing list or buy the book or contact us for bespoke advice.

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