The Last Word: Process management

Dan Callies, President
Oak Creek Plumbing, Kitchens & Bathrooms

640 E. Ryan Road,

Oak Creek, WI 53154

Number of employees: 25

Annual revenues: $4.5 million

Best advice ever received: “Take care of your customers and they will take care of you.”

Dan Callies has created forms for his staff to use to document virtually every step of his company’s processes. Callies says such documentation ensures uniform execution of best practices and efficient customer service.

“Doing more with less. In this economic time, that is the mantra we should all be thinking. How we can improve our efficiencies and output while lowering the effort or input to create these results? One way is to create documented job flow procedures and systems. This can be a daunting task that is well worth the efforts when completed. Two great books that can help you figure out how to develop systems are ‘The E-Myth’ by Michael Gerber and ‘Instant Systems’ by Bradley J. Sugars. Both of these books help you get into the mindset of the advantages of creating systems.

“The main advantage we have found from creating systems is it helps create predictable results time and time again. Customers and employees will know exactly what to expect because it can be communicated how the necessary task will get completed and the expected outcome. It is also a freeing feeling that we can train and monitor people to do necessary tasks, allowing us to focus our time and energy in other more productive or satisfying areas of the business.

“Processes give you peace of mind, allowing you to take time away from your business. In our company, we always look to the system for a solution. If a challenge arises, we use a system correction before we look for a people correction. We follow the system exactly until a new system is introduced or improvements are made.”

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