Guy Kawasaki Shares 3 Easy Steps to Boost Your Business Operations

With the new year in full swing, many companies take this time to hit reset and find ways to improve their overall business operations strategy. Guy Kawasaki, former chief evangelist at Apple and current leader at Canva, discussed tips for business growth during an episode of SalesforceLIVE. In the process, Kawasaki presented several ways entrepreneurs and companies can re-imagine the way they do business.

Here are his tips for rethinking your business operations and processes in 3 easy steps from Guy Kawasaki.

1. Don’t get stuck in “the way it’s always been done” mentality

The most important lesson that Kawasaki learned from Steve Jobs is that “Your current customers can’t tell you how to create a revolution. All they’re ever going to tell you is better, faster, cheaper.” He demonstrates this with the example of an ice business, which used to deliver cut blocks of ice via trucks and never saw the refrigerator coming. The fridge eventually put ice delivery out of business. “Most companies define themselves in terms of what they do, as opposed to the benefits they provide,” Kawasaki said. While your business may not need to find a better way to make ice, there are most likely places you can reinvent things to make your processes more efficient.

2. Keep your processes simple

In his book, Art of the Start, Kawasaki discusses how social media has changed the ways businesses are founded. He referred to social media as a meritocracy, saying that the more money you have, the less likely you are to succeed. Those with money, he said, abdicate and hire a digital agency. “And then they’re going to have this team of 10 to craft a tweet,” Kawasaki said. “So 10 people craft a tweet, three people work on the graphics, three lawyers are making sure you don’t promise anything in the tweet, and 45 days later you tweet.” For a medium that moves so fast, overcomplicating the process completely leads to failure.

The same axiom applies to managing your core business processes, whether it’s quote-to-cash, procure-to-pay, global financials, or planning and production. Are you using solutions that help automate these processes? Or do they make it a logistical nightmare? Now is a great time to take a closer look at your critical business processes and identify areas where you can streamline and simplify, so you can focus on what really matters — growth.

3. Embrace the art of storytelling for your business

As someone who has worked with many different companies, Kawasaki notes that the companies who come across as genuine and innovative will have a real story to tell about the founding of their product or service. “I think the genesis of most great tech companies is that people are creating something that they themselves wanted to use,” he said. He referenced the founder of eBay, Pierre Omidyar, who tells the story that he created the company to help his girlfriend sell her Pez collection online. “That is a total [made-up] story,” Kawasaki said. “But it is a great story nonetheless.” While you may have your corporate pitch down cold, step outside the box and see how you can bring that to life with great storytelling.

Check out the the full episode with Guy Kawasaki for even more tips on accelerating business growth.