THE KEY TO PRODUCTIVITY IS FLEXIBILITY, NOT SYSTEMS - Legalpedia | The Complete Lawyer - Research | Productivity | Health


February 22, 2021
February 24, 2021
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 the key to productivity is flexibility

The key to productivity is flexibility. We live in a world where nothing stays the same for too long, nor can you predict what will turn everything on its head. There are always new processes, challenges, and developments to contend with. When it comes to business, this presents a need to be flexible.

No matter your industry, you’re going to find curveballs coming your way, and you’re expected to adapt to whatever this new situation is.

It’s important you can quickly alter your approach in line with changing times.

That is truly being put to the test today. As habits and expectations shift across industries and the wider world, successful businesses are keen to adapt, make the necessary changes to survive, and embark on new paths.

Systems have served as an amazing tool for well over 200 years ago during the Industrial Revolution. Systems are exceptionally useful when the work being performed is repetitive (think assembly lines and flipping hamburgers) and doesn’t involve customer interaction, or when the environment is totally stable. But inject a little volatility and human interaction, and systems become your worst nightmare. Systems foster the illusion of “safe” (it has worked so far) and keep you tied to a “this is how we do things around here” mentality (policy manuals).

Systems can be a useful tool when used in the appropriate situations and in the appropriate amount, but systems are not the Holy Grail of business success any more than a hammer is the Holy Grail of carpentry. The key to productivity is flexibility.

During the current COVID-19 crisis, we’ve seen the importance of staying flexible and adaptable firsthand.

The virus disrupted businesses across the globe, making everyone rethink their services and modes of operation. Increasingly, we’re seeing businesses pivoting their services to keep afloat during this tumultuous time.

Similarly, remote working has become the hottest trend amongst businesses, and not out of choice. Forced to either embrace remote working or cease operating altogether, fundamental business operations have had to change and adapt.

COVID-19 is just one example of when business gets turned on their head. There are plenty of other unforeseen circumstances that could challenge your firm. It’s important we’re all prepared for whatever is thrown our way.

For many, change is a scary word that’s associated with extra work and unfamiliar territory. But embracing it means you’re better prepared to survive and thrive. To ignore it and refuse to adapt spells disaster for any law firm looking to navigate the current uncertainties. It’ll hold you back and leave you vulnerable.

Today’s Client wants someone who will fix their problem and make them feel special. It is quite difficult to do when the firm is obsessed with their internal systems and rigid compliance with the policy manual.

In conclusion, Systems are great at draining a firm of passion and flexibility. Use them carefully or you will pay dearly. Besides, how can you deliver exceptional service if you are unwilling to go outside of the regular norm? Who do you know that doesn’t want to be the exception to all the stupid rules and policies we are forced to deal with on a daily basis? On this, I rest my case.



Keith Cunningham – The Road less Stupid


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