John D Saunders and creating processes for your freelance business

It's always the right time to create a standard operating procedure for your small or solo business. John D. Saunders shows you how.
John D Saunders and creating processes for your freelance business

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I know all the reasons you haven’t made a Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for your business yet. 

  1. Why? I'm a solopreneur and who would even need it?
  2. I’m a creative and you can’t put creativity in a box. 
  3. I don’t have time to write and record all that. Who has time?

Well, you’ve landed on this article, so maybe you’re not trying to fight me on creating an SOP. I’ll still answer my made up arguments with myself. 

  1. Why? I'm a solopreneur and who would even need it? An SOP will help you - even as a solopreneur - to make sure that every step of your processes is followed every time and when you grow, you’ll be able to show off your repeatable processes for your teammates or easily hand off to a VA.
  2. I’m a creative and you can’t put creativity in a box. You’re not putting creativity in a box. You’re focusing your creative energy on creative things and standardizing the other pieces so you don’t have to spend energy on them. 
  3. I don’t have time to write and record all that. Who has time? You’re already doing the process. Just tack on a few minutes to notice, write, and record what you’re doing so someone could run it without you. 

John D. Saunders is a master of SOPs and he and his team thrive off of them. He broke down how to create an SOP for your business for each of your processes in our recent workshop

1. Identify

What do you want your SOP to accomplish? Focus on one clear purpose and watch how creating this process falls together easily.

2. Perform

Do the task you are creating the SOP for. Slow down and notice each part of the process while also being as efficient as possible. And don’t stress if it isn’t perfect. Your SOP will be a living thing and should be designed to grow and change as your business grows.

3. Document

With your end goal in mind, write down every little thing. Imagine that your mom is going to read this and try to copy your work. Leave no detail unwritten.

4. Record

Now perform the task again while doing a screen recording (we like to use Loom, but there are lots of screen recording options out there). Again, explain what you’re doing so that anyone watching could perform the task without you. 

5. Review

Show your documentation and video to your team or a trusted friend who can help you revise your process. Listen carefully to feedback and adjust as necessary. The documentation you created may have made sense inside your brain, but the SOP is designed to help people outside of your brain know exactly what to do.

6. Update

An SOP will be a living, growing, and changing thing just like your business. We hope that your business grows, your clients change for the better, and you continue to hone the skills and services that you are the best at. 

Watch John’s full workshop on SOP’s and how AI can assist you in more ways that you may have even known. More about John on his website, his agency’s website, or at BlackIllustrations.com.

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Michelle Lee
Michelle Lee worked in marketing and promotions for radio and event coordination for non-profits. Today, she uses those skills to sell the day’s schedule to three tiny humans. Michelle gets most excited about helping people reach their fullest potential and finding a G-2 .38 pen.
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