Sexy Systems to Save You

by Productivity

Think wingin' it makes you spontaneous and sexy? Yeah, dropping the ball, missing an appointment or forgetting to pack your unders is totally sexy (well, going commando can be I guess). Success is sexy and systems can get you there.

When I work with private coaching clients I see them poo-poo systems because they think they don't need them and it will create more work. It only creates work in the set-up but after that, some of it is easy-peasy.

When I work with small businesses and teams they think they are so small they don't need any real systems. This creates an endless cycle of winging it where there isn't consistency for the team or for the client. People like consistency. There's a time for spontaneity and a time for consistency. Your business and work is one of those times.

Why use a system?

  • You can automate. I don't automate everything but what I feel comfortable with and makes sense. Automatic bill pay? Yes. Automatic feed into my YNAB financial software? No. Why? Because forcing me to manually put it in makes me consider each purchase and really know where my money is going and is the primary way I went my first year in business without going into savings.
  • Saves your brainmeat. As you know from reading half my posts, I'm a very distracted person. Why would I use my brainmeat to try to remember each step I take with a client when dropping even one tiny step could impact the entire process? Why try to remember each hotel I'm staying in for the next three trips when I can just autosync everything into TripIt?
  • People can cover for you. If you work with other people, you've probably been exposed to at least one time an emergency occurred and you couldn't get that document you needed from Stan because he saves it on his desktop instead of in Dropbox or a shared drive. If you have a system of what you're doing and how to do it, an emergency stays personal and doesn't affect your business.
  • You can figure out the bottlenecks. This one is big. By writing down your systems you may determine you are missing a step or don't need a step or that half your team is completing only 2/3 of the steps…and not the same ones.

Who is the least likely to have systems?

  • People who view themselves as ‘free spirits' and don't want to be tied down to success.
  • Small businesses or teams that have grown and are continuing to do things the way they have always done them and never had time to put them into place because they didn't want to have success.

Okay, maybe I'm a little harsh, but seriously. Systems help! Coming up in later posts I'll explain some simple systems to incorporate that will save you time, frustration and anxiety. Your new cool, calm demeanor will definitely be sexy.

Do you need help figuring out how to put systems in your life? Contact me at with the subject line ‘Sexy' for a complementary 30-minute Strategy Session.

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Your Weekender Snapshot and Tim Ferriss’s Five Bullet Friday are my favorite emails I receive.
jim west

Principal and Managing Director, GFF Architects