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The Owner’s Success Formula

Part 1 of 2

What’s the owner’s success formula?

It’s very simple; Systems = Freedom.

If you as the owner of your firm go on a 4 week vacation, what happens to your business? What happens to the quality and quantity of activity?

Some authors have defined the strength of a small business as being directly proportionate to how much of it can continue in the owner’s absence. Whether you own a large firm or a micro business, having simple and effective systems in place will make it much easier for you to step away from your office- without waking up at 3 AM in a cold sweat.

So what is a system?

Simply put, a system is a documented way of performing a task that solves a problem and ensures that the task is performed properly and consistently. Creating successful systems means having effective forms, scripts, follow up, marketing processes etc. that are used by you and your staff. In also includes an effective carrot and stick management plan that helps your staff to manage themselves.

Here are some ways that systems give the owner and staff more freedom:

  • Employees are freed up to be creative because they don’t have to “wing it” or reinvent the wheel.
  • Everyone operates at a smoother pace because there is a proven, working process.
  • Systems reduce burnout and turnover.
  • The more you grow the more you need systems and the more you will see the benefit of increased freedom.
  • Recruiters don’t have to “learn the hard way” but rather they learn what works the first time.
  • The firm is no longer people dependent, its systems dependent. If a big biller leaves it’s not the end of the world. You have a system to “grow” a new one.
  • The owner can work 4 days a week or take a vacation with much less stress.
As an owner, you need to decide what percent of your business needs to be systematized. If you have a large firm you will need more complex systems whereas if you’re a micro operator you just need simple systems. If you were a systems purist you might say that if an owner goes on vacation for 3 months and the business proceeds without a hitch then he has a fully systematized business.

Obviously for smaller operators or soloists, leaving for 3 months is not going to be practical or realistic. So if you can’t systematize your entire business then choose percent as a goal. Try to systematize 25% of your business. You may use automation or support staff to do this if you’re small. So what that means is that if you go on vacation, 25% of your business functions continue without you. Be sure to consider your firms size when deciding what level of systemization is relevant for you.

In the next newsletter article, I’ll give some specific examples of systems that you can emulate.

-Gary Stauble

Gary Stauble is the principal consultant for The Recruiting Lab, a coaching company that assists Firm Owners and Solo Recruiters in generating more profit in less time. His free monthly e-zine, “Creative Recruiting” will help you to attract premium clients, make more placements, and still be home in time for dinner. Subscribe today at There are also over 20 Free Special Reports online covering advanced marketing, firm management and recruiting best practices. For more information or to schedule a complimentary consultation, visit the site or call 408-847-5049.

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