Turnkey Living


The Boss is having me read The E Myth and see how we can apply the business systems theory of that book to CreativeTechs. We’ve been batting ideas back and forth and he’s having me read other business theory books to see what can be used to complement, expand on and improve the ideas in The E Myth. It gives me something to think about during the day while I’m waiting for the next customer call.

CreativeTechs provides services that require too much knowledge and education for us to be able to completely Turnkey the operation. Turnkeying a business is designing your business in such a way that you can hire employees with little actual skill and have them still manage to turn out a product that’s identical to the product produced by longtime employees. Michael Gerber, the author, has a huge admiration for McDonalds and uses them as the prime example of his business theory. McDonalds is his example of how to take a small business and break down all it’s processes into reproducable systems thereby making it possible to reproduce (franchise) that business all over the world.

On April 15th we’ll be starting the Quick Start Mastery program. Between now and then we’re studying our customer base and our costs and the way we do things. So far I’m noticing that the place where we’re most likely to be able to systemize things is in my own job and in how the technicians record their information. If The Boss is willing to put into practice the systems I want it’s going to require a lot more paperwork than he and the rest of the technicians currently fill out. I’d prefer most of the paperwork to be electronic (and therefore accessible to techs in the field). Even so I’m not expecting any of the guys to get excited about this. It’s hard enough to get them to fill out all their reports on a weekly basis.

One thing I’ve noticed from this process so far is how much I systemize my activities as a matter of course. When I cook I break down the different activities into steps. When I get up in the morning I have a variety of habits that I run through. When I draw I start with a specific graphite weight and progress from there. I think in a very “this then this” fashion. In fact, I’m not sure that I’d really call it thinking. If I automatically start applying system breakdowns to my activities am I really thinking?

That’s not a question I’m looking at deeply. Plenty of other folks have devoted their lives and many words to that sort of philosophical rumination. I find it entertaining to watch my self function automatically in the same way I’m entertained by Paliki going through her motions. Once in a while I see her think.

Something disrupts her pattern. She stops. Then she acts in a new way. It’s obvious to me that her brain has weigh options and is acting out a new plan. And everytime I watch her think I wonder about the humans who insist that only human animals think, that other animals only act on instinct. Am I deluded? Are they stupid?

Of course I usually decide that they are stupid and deluded.

Off topic much?