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Why Are You Afraid of (Re) Defining Business Processes?

Written By: Gabriel Gheorghiu
Published On: February 11 2010

We all are—except consultants who praise the importance of business processes, but sometimes don’t practice what they preach. Business processes can be simply good or bad habits that people follow mostly because it’s what they’ve always done rather than it being a way to work more efficiently.

There are a few very good reasons that make people afraid of changing the way they do their business processes. Let’s take a look at some of them:

Accountability: Well defined business processes allow managers to know who did what and when. Wisely used, this is a great way to improve everyone’s work. But, since we’re all human—and therefore far from being perfect—we often tend to abuse the power we’re given. This is what people fear the most when it comes to changing business processes.

Time-consuming: Managers are afraid of changing business processes because when time is spent managing a team, a customer base, relations with providers, etc., (re)defining business processes is the last thing on a manager’s mind. Ironically, most managers understand that the “traditional” system in use will fail sooner or later. Since any initiative to change things will not get them anywhere, mostly because other decision makers may not buy in, they continue perpetuating the same inefficient system.

High-risk: Consultants are also afraid of changing business processes because they are the ones who usually get blamed when things go wrong. However when consultants are not afraid of create or rebuild business processes, it is either because they are exceptionally good at what they do or because there is a clause in the contract that absolves them from anything that can go wrong.

There is another reason why decision makers are reluctant to create or change business processes and that is mentality. You know the old saying: “if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”? Yeah, just wait until it breaks! But even when it breaks, a new cycle starts—exactly the same as the old one.

Are you afraid of creating or remodeling business processes in your organization? Please feel free to leave your comments below.
 
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