Recession Survival Tactics – Automation and Systemization

Part 5 of a 6 Part Series on Recession Survival

One key to saving money, and giving your customers higher value in a recession, is to systemize and automate where possible.There is NO BUSINESS which cannot benefit at some point from systemization or automation.

It may be as simple as creating a routine to do repetitive tasks faster. It may involve creating a template to start with each time you write a contract or proposal, or for producing products, documents, or other items. If you do something once a week, or more, you can usually find a way to make it faster.

Automation is something that can be implemented in a website, or through online services, or through use of the right tools in the office. It is one of the keys to breaking through to new levels of profit and getting past some of your time barriers, but it can also be a key to retaining high value while containing costs for your customers or clients.

For small businesses though, it is important that you automate the right things, and in the right way. There are three basic keys to good automation:

1. It should save you more time than it costs you. Done at the wrong time (too soon), or with the wrong tools, you’ll spend more time setting up and maintaining the automation than you’ll save. So think about the long term tasks involved before you jump in, or you’ll just bury yourself.

2. It should NEVER negatively affect your unique selling proposition, and it should not harm your customer relations. Good automation preserves what is unique about your business. It allows you to automate the IMPERSONAL parts of the business, while retaining the essential elements of personal contact or custom service that may define your business. This is especially critical for small businesses, because this is often what allows you to compete with larger companies that are fully automated.

3. It should save you time, while simultaneously enhancing your ability to deliver consistent and high quality service or products to your customers. The point here is that it should make business better for THEM, too. Done right, it makes your business better, and is not something that lessens quality or availability.

Some of this can be done through a website, and often it can save you money over other options.
Some can be done with free software – either on your desktop, or installed into your hosting space.
Some can be done through purchase of hardware or equipment in your office.
Some can be done with templates or other tools that you make, which eliminate the repetitive steps in a process.

Time can be saved simply by devising routines, or systems, for getting tasks done, that shave off time. Not “automation” per-se, but more of an assembly line procedure where you work from templates, start with the same base each time, or work out the fastest way to do something, then do it that way every time. Often, this lays the groundwork for automation, because it helps us spot the repetitive tasks that CAN be automated without harming quality.

Automation and systemization are one of the things that help you achieve extraordinary results, either in growth, uniqueness in your business, or in offering higher value for less money. In a recession, all of these aspects can be part of defining the success potentials and making you an exception in the sea of losses.

Grow a Garden!

Gardening doesn't have to be that hard! No matter where you live, no matter how difficult your circumstances, you CAN grow a successful garden.

Life from the Garden: Grow Your Own Food Anywhere Practical and low cost options for container gardening, sprouting, small yards, edible landscaping, winter gardening, shady yards, and help for people who are getting started too late. Plenty of tips to simplify, save on work and expense.