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BLOGThe Secret… System

by Randall CraigFiled in: Blog, Make It Happen TipsheetTagged as: ,

Are you one of those people who are organized, or are you prone to clutter? Do you always get things done, or do you sometimes let things slip? And are you calm under pressure, or do you get easily flustered? Often, professional success isn’t just a question of intellect or attitude, but your ability to be organized, diligent, and composed.

There is one technique that can help you with all three: the technique of systemization. Systemization is the skill of developing process around a set of common tasks. Here are some of the benefits:

  • You don’t need to remember each step – you just remember the name of the group.
  • Efficiency: systems can be improved over time.
  • They can be automated.
  • They can be delegated or outsourced, in whole or in part.
  • They can be branded and marketed.
  • Knowledge management: documentation around the system inputs and outputs can be shared.

A simple example of a system or process would be around a sale. There may be a number of steps:

  1. Attend an event: a networking meeting, trade show, or association event.
  2. Add information about any prospects into a CRM.
  3. Research prospect’s website and social profiles
  4. Meet with prospect to discuss needs in greater detail
  5. Write proposal
  6. Follow-up to sign contract

If a person went to a networking event and met ten potential clients, they  would know to follow the system for each prospect. Their manager could measure their progress. And neither of them would have to worry about inventing what needed to be done – the knowledge is encapsulated within the system itself. Interestingly, each of these steps (for example, Meet with prospect) might also represent a process itself.

Systems are wonderful for collapsing large sequential to-do lists into one manageable label, and capturing best practices. They help with organization, and make sure that nothing slips through the cracks. And they reduce your stress because answers to many questions are often embedded into the processes themselves.


Most people follow their own processes, but they reinvent/remember each step anew. And since our processes are rarely documented, efficiency, automation, delegation, or improvement are rarely possible. This week, choose two of your messier processes, and write them down. This opens the possibility to being better organized, more diligent, and calmer under pressure. Once you’ve done so, you know The Secret… System.

Does this topic resonate? Reach out to Randall: he can present it to your group.  (More presentation topics)
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