Process before people… yes, really!

Jul 14, 2017 | Leadership

A lot of folks think that because we are “nice”, people must come first in our organization.

They think we develop people and put them in the forefront of our corporate creed to serve others.

Many people believe that we care about people and our employees above all things.

Well, they are wrong.

What we really care about is process, and once we have it fine-tuned, then we put the best people in the proper place.

You see, people are our priority, but only the right people in the right place.

Shocking? I hope not.

Anyone who has been around me long enough should realize that we focus on creating the best employees, the best work environment, and the best output possible for our clients. In most cases we not only deliver, but we actually exceed their expectations.

This is because we have such a strict process in place, that we are able to work as a team knowing the steps necessary to succeed. In doing so, we attract the best and the brightest people to work with us. In return, they are the happiest and the output is simply awesome.

Does that mean we hit the ball out of the park every day… most of the time – yes.

Does that mean the process keeps us from mistakes …kind of, but everyone has his or her “day”.

Does that mean it is perfect and seamless all the time… never.

Humans make mistakes, but process is the key to finding the perfect path.

If you focus on process first, and master it with precision and skill, it allows you to turn your attention to the people and it opens the door for better service; your customers and employees; all of which, funny enough are simply…


I get asked all the time about “turnover rate”.

People seek me out and want to know the secret formula to predict human behavior and know which employees will make it through the process and which will not. They are constantly seeking a magical number that lets them predict the future and know when & where their next kink will appear in their Human Capital resources.

So, do you think there is a magic number?

Do you really think there is an accurate rate to predict the fluctuation of the human output that will cause people to seek employment elsewhere or better yet, how you should encourage them to do so (voluntarily or not)?

Does anyone really believe organizations can predict the future by understanding the cycle of human behavior and their willingness to work in a process so well defined, they will prosper in its own existence?

Can the number really exist?

Is there really an “acceptable” turnover rate?

Of course there is.

Simply put, it is 8.5%.

Yep, we can tell you with incredible accuracy that the acceptable turnover rate for humans, even within the best processes, is 8.5% per year.

So, if you have 12 employees or followers, just go ahead and expect the inevitable. No matter how well you train them or how well you set the process in place for their success, you will lose 1 every year.

So face it, 1 employee for every 12 on staff will turn over at some point in any given year. Sometimes it’s for good, other times not… but always predictable and for the most part acceptable and encouraged.

As we look back in history, we know that change is part of the process, even when you least expect it.

Change is the necessary tune up required by “the process” to keep it in line with the objective, and your vision of success.

A lot of people like to fight their own process, or even more, put people out front as their mission toward success.

The best of the best leaders throughout history have known this philosophy to be short sided and a receipt for failure.

The key is in understanding, as much as you wish it were not true, people are predictable. They all fit into the same 4 phases of life, all have the same confidence grid, and everyone tends to resist a formalized process until they prove to themselves it is the path to success.

So, in the end, if 11 out of 12 figure it out, and decide to stick to the process and make a go of it, you can bet your success is all but guaranteed.

It only takes a few people with a dedicated leadership, proper training, and a clear process to do great things. So, hedge your bet and get ready – losing 1 out of 12 is not so bad as long as you keep your focus on point and trust the process.

If you do, everyone will be better served and in the end, it’s the humans – the people – who appreciate it most.


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