Easy to do - Powers of Compliance Man

Often in organizations, particularly growing ones, you need new processes. In any organization, specially growing ones, you don't have a lot of time. So people tend to build the easiest to setup system possible. They just try and get something out. This usually ends up with a cruddy solution, you think things are moving fast you can just put something out there but usually those small time savings at the beginning end up in huge downstream costs -

One of the most obvious facts of social and political life is the longevity of the temporary. British licensing hours for taverns, for instance, French rent controls, or Washington “temporary” government buildings, all three hastily developed in World War I to last “a few months of temporary emergency” are still with us fifty years later. The effective decision-maker knows this. He too improvises, of course. But he asks himself every time, “If I had to live with this for a long time, would I be willing to?” And if the answer is “No,” he keeps on working to find a more general, a more conceptual, a more comprehensive solution—one which establishes the right principle – Peter Drucker Effective Executive

This is key. If you save an hour by designing a process that takes 5 minutes more than it should, by the time the process is done 13 times, you have wasted more time than you save, and if you do it for a process that many people use often the time loss can be absolutely devestating. 

Unfortunately most processes are not designed by those who use them so they may not care that their hour saved is costing everyone else days. Even if they do, they may feel they don't have the time right. 

In addition poorly designed processes end up executed poorly. Systems shouldn't be designed to be tough to use. the better they are at promoting compliance and allowing people to execute them swiftly, accurately and with ease the better your results will be. 

So spend time when designing a process to take into account what the users need, what will be easy to do, and what can be done swiftly. Take some time to think about what you would like if you were doing this. Take the time to ask someone who thinks differently then you, who will also be using the process. 

Then test it out, test it quickly and iterate so you have something that stands up to feedback. Don't make it perfect at first, as you will find you will have paved over cow paths. 

Take the time and make the system easy to use, it will make your organization run better, with more time, and increase the happiness in the world. 


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