The Personal MBA

Master the Art of Business

A world-class business education in a single volume. Learn the universal principles behind every successful business, then use these ideas to make more money, get more done, and have more fun in your life and work.

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What Is 'Systemization'?

A system is a process made explicit and repeatable. Systemization is the act of creating a new system.

The primary benefit of creating a System is that you can examine the process and make improvements. Developing Systems helps everyone do what they have to do with minimum misunderstanding.

Creating systems may feel like extra work, but they ultimately make your work easier. The better your systems, the better your business.

Josh Kaufman Explains 'Systemization'

Even if you make everything up as you go along, there is still a process involved, assuming that multiple steps are needed to get from point A to point B. Instead of constantly "winging it," clarifying your process can provide a few major benefits.

A System is a process made explicit and repeatable-a series of steps that has been formalized in some way. Systems can be written or diagrammed, but they are always Externalized in some way.

The primary benefit of creating a system is that you can examine the process and make improvements. By making each step in the process explicit, you can understand how the core processes work, how they're structured, how they affect other processes and systems, and how you can improve the system over time.

Google is a great example of the power of systems.

Every time you use the Google search engine, thousands of computers automatically spring into action to deliver your results. Google's search algorithm (a fancy programming word for system) defines how these computers work together, and Google employees are constantly refining the details of how the system works.

Each year, Google engineers make over 550 improvements to the primary search engine algorithm, making it better able to point you to what you're looking for. As a result, the Google algorithm has become so efficient that your search results are returned in approximately 0.2 seconds with zero human intervention-an astounding achievement. If Google hadn't spent most of their early time and energy defining and systematizing the search process, the company simply wouldn't exist.

Systems also help teams of people stay on the same page.

Communication is necessary for people to work well together, and the more people you're working with, the more communication you need, an idea called Communication Overhead. Developing systems and clear processes for certain events and tasks can help everyone do what must be done with a minimum of misunderstanding and fuss.

If you can't systematize your process, you can't automate it.

Imagine what it would be like if Google relied on a team of human librarians to generate search results. It'd be a nightmare- you'd wait days (or weeks, or months) to get your results.

The key to Google's quality and speed is Automation: by explicitly defining the rules of how the system operates, the search engine programmers are able to automate the day- to-day operation of the system. As a result, Google developers are free to focus their efforts on continually improving the system instead of operating the system.

Most people resist creating business systems because it feels like extra work. We're all busy, and it's easy to feel like you don't have time to create and improve systems because there's already too much work to do.

Actually, useful systems make your work easier-if you're feeling overloaded, the best thing you can do to solve the issue is spend time creating good systems.

Systemization and Automation have a few major drawbacks: the Irony of Automation and the Paradox of Automation.

Regardless of the drawbacks, effective systems are the lifeblood of a business-they allow you to create, market, sell, and ultimately deliver what you have to offer.

The better your systems, the better your business.

Questions About 'Systemization'


"If you can't describe what you are doing as a process, you don't know what you're doing."

W. Edwards Deming, production management expert and pioneer of statistical process control


From Chapter 4:

Value Delivery


https://personalmba.com/systemization/



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The Personal MBA

Master the Art of Business

A world-class business education in a single volume. Learn the universal principles behind every successful business, then use these ideas to make more money, get more done, and have more fun in your life and work.

Buy the book:


About Josh Kaufman

Josh Kaufman is an acclaimed business, learning, and skill acquisition expert. He is the author of two international bestsellers: The Personal MBA and The First 20 Hours. Josh's research and writing have helped millions of people worldwide learn the fundamentals of modern business.

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