Every business, no matter how big or small, uses its own systems to ensure proper execution of tasks, while growing and expanding. These systems are specific for every business and they are used for every process that runs in – from sending an email to successfully handling over a project. I am sure you know the processes and systems of your business like the palm of your hand, and you teach personally every new team member how to use them. It’s fine, that’s what most entrepreneurs and small businesses do.
Repeat the process & waste of your time
So every time you onboard a new team member, you invest your time to teach them (because you know your business best). But what would you do if a team member becomes unavailable or quits unexpectedly? Sad to say, that happens more often when you work with freelancers. No one can takeover a new task overnight, and if you’re in a rush, your options are either do it yourself, or quickly hire someone, compromising either quality or price, and sometimes both.
SOPs are life-saving for your business
Documenting all your business systems and processes can be overwhelming and time consuming, but in the end, that can save you and your business in tough times. And once set, SOPs save your time (and money) every time you need to delegate a task to another teammate. Your SOPs will ensure that all processes in your business – from email handling to client landing – are handled exactly as you want them to be, and more important – you can rest assured that unexpected absences can be covered by any other member of your team in no time.
For solopreneurs and professionals, SOPs are the tool that helps getting everything out of your head, so you’re not stuck doing everything yourself. It might be the key to scaling your business. You can use it as an acting guide when you start outsourcing.
Design your SOPs for success
Having used and created tens (if not hundreds) of SOPs, the most important thing is:
Explain the process as if you’re talking to an 8 year old child.
Trust me and just do it! Be detailed, be visual – add screenshots and videos where possible. One screenshots can replace a thousand words. And a SOP crafted the proper way can be the difference between you doing the job, and a virtual assistant getting the job done for you while you take care of more important tasks.