Process Versus System

One of my clients, in the early days of our work together, said he was looking forward to understanding the difference between a process and a system. I suggested he would learn the difference as we progressed along the journey to implement EOS®. We actually do teach process, which leads to the creation of a system in our sessions.

One of the Six Key Components™ of EOS®is the Process Component™. This component is all about identifying the handful of Core Processes that are the company’s way of doing business – their business model so to speak. Identifying and documenting the company’s way of doing business allows the Leadership Team to systemize their company. Now we aren’t talking about a 500-page standard operating procedure manual that most employees don’t even know exists, let alone follow. We recommend the Leadership Team agree to their list of Core Processes, name each one, and create a bulleted list of the major steps that comprise each Core Process.

Once that work is completed, the Leadership Team goes to work teaching everyone in the company, who has a role in any of the Core Processes, how to follow that process. The result – Leadership Teams see consistency throughout the organization. Managers don’t have to worry if the new customer service representative was taught how to handle a customer support request. And if an account manager goes on vacation, managers and leaders know the person who stands in for that account manager will assist the clients the same way as their regular account manager. Doesn’t that sound as though you will create peace of mind? Doesn’t that sound like a system that will increase employee and customer satisfaction, create more sales, and increase profitability?

So let’s review. A process is a conceptual sequence of events that enables people in a business to do what they do. And systems are what are used to execute the process.

The client I referenced in the opening paragraph understood the difference when I taught the Leadership Team how to document their Core Processes. And he realized we had been talking about processes and systems all along.

Much like my client, business owners who implement EOS®realize that they, too, have been talking about the concepts all along. EOS® has a unique way of making everything make sense. If you follow the Six Key Components™, you hold yourself and your Leadership Team accountable to your Vision and Core Values.

The Six Key Components™ are thoroughly explained in Gino Wickman’s book, Traction. The book does a great job of walking you through each component and all the tools and charts that support each one. You can read chapter one here to get a better understanding of what the book is about. And if you do decide to move forward, an EOS®implementer such as myself can help you. As many of my clients have experienced, if you follow the concepts, your business will systematically and permanently improve.

If you have any questions about processes, systems, other EOS®concepts, or EOS®in general, please fill out the contact form below to request a 15-minute phone consultation with me.  I’m confident you’ll find the simplicity of EOS®offers a valuable and refreshing change for your company.




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