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The unavoidable nature of business processes | Slangbusters Blog
Oct 15, '19

The unavoidable nature of business processes

Overused and cliché but for a reason, the destination cannot be devoid of the journey.

Hand pointing towards a process
We celebrate the beginning and we admire the end, but all the learning lies in between.

We all have heard stories about great people and the moment when they got to say Eureka! What we conveniently ignore is the period of struggle in the middle which taught them the most, the time that takes, rather, deserves the credit of compelling these minds to think, leading to the realization of the presence of the force of gravity.

This is exactly why, the bulb as a semiotic for “getting an idea” is not just useless, but gravely inaccurate as it discredits the whole process.

We might be doomed to repeat history if we don’t know it, but not knowing the history also means that we do not know the present. This is why we study history. What matters is not that the big bang happened, it is the why and how it happened that adds to our knowledge about the world that is. The process gives answers.

Although, along with history being studied, quotes from most daily journals say, if you can’t move forward, you’re busy looking back and that says everything about moderation. The process is not about living in the past, it is about gaining from the past for a better present and a stronger outcome.

Social media is full of content that attracts insane amounts of traction. One such content is before after images. We love looking at someone in an unhealthy shape transform into a hunk in two images kept side by side. The hustle and hard work that it would have demanded doesn’t cross our minds as we scroll through. Everyone is focused on the extreme ends. It is not even our fault, it is a bias built in the brain. (aha! alliteration bias) Where our fault lies is having the knowledge of our bias and not fighting it to acknowledge the process.

We immediately double-tap a 30-second fast-forwarded video of a street artist converting an empty canvas into a masterpiece. A good artist looks at the process, the details of how that artist achieved the outcome that they did. Not to replicate, to learn to better themselves.

The invisibility of the process is directly proportional to its importance.
Illustration of a flower

We live in a results-oriented society. Some investors expect results without excuses when they have not been a part of the business processes and that says a lot. That is when we also understand how important processes are.

We are all ‘running’ behind outcomes, ignoring the ‘vehicle called process’ that is standing right by and will take you to the final destination better, and faster.

Expressions like “the bottom line” and “we need it yesterday” are typical in board room meetings. This is not only ignorance towards the due time that some tasks need and deserve, but also shows disregard for the process and thought that goes behind anything that is created.

Lesser the time given in pre-production, lesser the life of the product.

And people wonder why their “brand identity” which is basically taken off of logomaker.com is not timeless.

If we focus on planning more than the process, it shows that we think about the future and the end result more than the present and the process.

That said, deadlines are necessary. Artists seldom find themselves not knowing when to stop and deadlines are usually a perfect flow breaker to get out of the impending spiral of the neverending need to edit and improve the outcome.

An unorganized file naming structure

The commonly heard expression “I don’t care how you get there, just get there” is a top-level executive favorite. And this throws light on how not just the process but fair, ethical process is also ignored. Some questions that you can ask yourself to stay away from adopting such means to get to places are:

- Are all team members allowed/able to participate in the process?

- Are they given the context, the reasons for decisions taken? Is everyone on the same page?

- Are the decisions made on accurate and researched information?

- Was the process completely transparent?

And these are not all the questions. These prove that ethical and all-involving decision-making process is applied.

This is the base on which Slangbusters philosophy developed. Jargon is one such unethical tactic which most organizations use to either close the lead or to make the investor believe in something that might not even exist. Through a simple process of elimination of jargon, we want the owner of the business to be a part of their own branding process.

When we talk about Simon Sinek’s golden circle, the most importance is given to the reason of the organization’s existence, then the process and the offering of any business. But in real life, the importance is reversed completely. Most are busy questioning ‘what do you do?’ and the rest are busy answering with their offerings.

‘The why’ is obsolete in most organizations. They always seem to boast about what they do and ‘the how’ is where you answer questions about the process.

The reason religion is failing today is because people are blindly following ‘the what’ of religion, the traditions, practices, and faiths rather than the philosophy. This is ‘the why’ of it all, the process of how these practices came into being, and if they are still relevant today.

The anticipation of the full moon makes it special. If there was a red moon every day, we might as well call it the sun and never look at it.

Let’s look at personal goals. Most people are afraid of goals that they believe are “too ambitious.” But the fear exists because they look at the outcome rather than the process.

A big book might seem like a task that non-readers avoid. But they would have read three small books equalling its size in the last month. What is the process here? To read it page by page. The big goal can be divided into baby steps and you will have completed reading The Second Sex by Simone de Beauvoir in a little over five weeks.

More than decisions, the decision-making process is what determines the quality of the outcome.

Talking about books, in The Process of Creating Life: Nature of Order, Book 2: An Essay on the Art of Building and the Nature of the Universe (The Nature of Order), Alexander states,

“Processes play a more fundamental role in determining the life or death of the building than does the design”

Nothing is built exactly as initially conceived. Not even close. That is why process matters.
Kintsugi : The art of repair

The Japanese have a lot to learn from, especially their work cultures and philosophies of doing things. They focus on the process and have already proved their efficiency through the process. Even in their art, one can see that importance is given to the process more than the outcome. When a decorative pot is broken, it is mended with gold. This not only shows a philosophy where imperfections are decorated, but also that the outcome, the piece doesn’t matter as much as the process of creating it, the story behind it.

For illustrator Christoph Niemann, staring at a blank sheet of paper is a part of the process of illustrating. If he were working in an organization, this part of his process would reflect as unproductivity instead of a part of the process of creating something beautiful.

To most C-level executives, the process might seem like an expensive and time-consuming affair. We might even sometimes need to build quickly rather than painstakingly. There are times when the client needs something yesterday and delivery becomes inevitably necessary at that time. In these cases, one must build quickly, but build more. If you produce multiple options, you are making sure the first draft is not the final outcome. Enhance your process such that the outcome automatically is better than the rest. There’s always a chance to better things in the future. If not, detachment is the next topic we should be writing about.

This piece did not begin when the writer started writing it. The process began when he realized people don’t care about the process, especially in branding, where the process is taken as something unnecessary. Research is a phase that is considered as “avoidable expense” and branding is confused with its outcome, the identity and boiled down to something even smaller, the logo. So if you have doubts, we are here. Contact now.

— by Manas, Content Strategist, Slangbusters Studio

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