Procedures aren’t just useful for helping you remember the important details as you complete your tasks. They’re equally as important for your team members.
Sharing your procedures with other members of the office allows someone to cover for you during planned and unplanned absences. You won’t have to feel guilty about taking a sick day or scheduling a much-needed vacation, because you’ll know that the office is in good hands while you’re gone.
Procedures are also instrumental in facilitating delegation. Handing someone a procedure for doing something is often quicker and easier than trying to find the time to teach them yourself.
If you’re ready to share your procedures with your team, here are some tips to help you get started.
- Make sure everyone knows that your procedures exist AND where to find them. Procedure are useless if no one knows where to find them. Send out a quick department-wide email or speak up in the next staff meeting to let people know where to find your procedures.
- Start with a hands-on approach. As you familiarize your team with your procedures, it’s helpful to give them time to explore your manual so they can ask questions and provide feedback on how to make them better, if necessary. Physically hand them the manual and sit with them as they flip through it for the first time. Encourage them to test the procedures – preferably before you’re in a pinch and need to know that they work as you intended.
- Make your procedures a part of all new employee onboarding. As new hires come in, welcome them with your procedures. Knowing that they exist and are there for their use helps cement procedures as a part of the company culture. Procedures are also a huge help during an employee’s first day, week, and month.
- Regularly revisit and review your procedures manual with your team. Make improving and updating your procedures an agenda item at every staff meeting. This is a strategic way to make process improvement an ongoing project. It also provides consistent feedback that will help you keep your procedures current and relevant.
- Communicate the primary contact point. If you created the procedures, it’s likely you are the primary point of contact if something needs to be updated. But that isn’t always the case. So be specific about who owns which procedures and communicate who is the primary point of contact for updating (or making decisions about updating) the procedures that your team develops. This ensures that nothing gets missed or falls through the cracks.
As your organization gets used to using procedures, there may be a few hiccups and miscommunications. There’s no such thing as a perfect implementation process. However, it won’t take long for everyone to get on the same page, and before you know it, no one will remember a time when procedures weren’t a regular fixture in the office!
Need Help Getting Started With Procedures? We Have Resources to Help You!
© 2024 Julie Perrine International, LLC
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Julie Perrine is the founder and CEO of All Things Admin, providing training, mentoring and resources for administrative professionals worldwide. Julie applies her administrative expertise and passion for lifelong learning to serving as an enthusiastic mentor, speaker and author who educates admins around the world on how to be more effective every day. Learn more about Julie’s books — The Innovative Admin: Unleash the Power of Innovation in Your Administrative Career and The Organized Admin: Leverage Your Unique Organizing Style to Create Systems, Reduce Overwhelm, and Increase Productivity, and Become a Procedures Pro: The Admin’s Guide to Developing Effective Office Systems and Procedures, and Prove Your Skills! With a Powerful Professional Portfolio.