Chris is the founder and CEO of Trainual, a platform for entrepreneurs to get their business out of their brains by documenting and delegating the systems and processes in their company. Catch more about Chris, his podcasts, books, and additional resources for business leaders at chrisronzio.com.
The Business Playbook – Get The Business Playbook… for free!
3 Value Bombs
1) If you have the mentality that you’re just going to take everything under your control forever, then that’s the ceiling for your business. If you learn the skill of documenting, delegating, and empowering other people, then the sky is the limit.
2) Don’t delegate tasks. Delegate responsibilities.
3) You’ve got to work on the business, not like just in the business. By working in the business, you learn how to make the business better. Working on the business fine-tunes it so other people can work in the business for you.
Kevin Anderson & Associates: Are you finally ready to publish a book the right way? For a limited time, KAA is offering Fire Nation a free 90-min consultation to discuss writing and publishing your book! Visit KAWriting.com/fire to book yours today!
**Click the time stamp to jump directly to that point in the episode.
Today’s Audio MASTERCLASS: Your Business Has 99 Problems, But A Playbook Ain’t One.
[1:13] – Chris shares something that he believes about becoming successful that most people disagree with.
- If you want something done right, don’t do it yourself. Train someone else to do it or you’ll be stuck doing it forever.
[1:43] – What is a business playbook, and how do we know when to create one?
- A business playbook is simply an owner’s manual for your business. It says who are you, what you do, and how you do each of those things.
- A business playbook is the profile, the people, the policies, and the processes all stitched together.
- You should create a system for every task you do consistently in your business.
[3:55] – Chris talks about creating a culture in business and life that includes both documentation and consistency.
- To grow a business, things need to happen consistently.
- Beyond just writing things down and making it a one-time exercise, you want things to live beyond you and be part of your business culture.
- Don’t delegate tasks. Delegate responsibilities.
- Review and revise your playbook periodically.
- Anytime you find yourselves repeating something all over again, call that out. Have a little fun with it.
[10:01] – How do entrepreneurs thrive at the intersection of operations and human resource?
- If you’re still getting started, you may be focused on the operations or making things work
- At some point in building a business, you change your focus from improving customer experience to improving employee experience.
- When people get hired, they see a bulleted list of responsibilities. That is you communicating to potential candidates what you expect of them.
- In the operations side, always address the “how”
[12:46] – Chris talks about The Business Playbook.
- It is the culmination of all the colliding ideas of how you build a people-first culture and run business like a machine.
- You’ve got to work on the business, not just in the business. By working in the business, you learn how to make the business better. Working on the business fine-tunes it so other people can work in the business for you.
- The Business Playbook is a guide to capture the knowledge, best practices, policies, the culture that already exists in your business.
[14:55] – How can we apply things from The Business Playbook today?
- Read through it first on your own, then assign out different areas of the book to the people who will be working with you.
[15:52] – Chris’ irresistible offer for Fire nation!
- The Business Playbook – Get The Business Playbook… for free!
[17:13] – Chris’ key takeaway for Fire Nation
- If you have the mentality that you’re just going to take everything under your control forever, then that’s the ceiling for your business. If you learn a skill and document, delegate, and empower other people, then the sky is the limit.
- What is a business playbook? Get up to speed before you get the book!
Boom, shake the room, Fire Nation JLD here and welcome to Entrepreneurs On Fire brought to you by the HubSpot Podcast Network with great shows like the MarTech podcast. Today, we'll be focusing on your business, which has 99 problems, but a playbook eight one to drop these value bombs. I brought to Chris Ronzio in the EOFire studios. Chris is the founder and CEO of Trainual, a platform for entrepreneurs to get their business out of their brains. By documenting in delegating the systems and processes in their company. Catch more about Chris has podcast books and additional resources for business leaders at trainual.com/fire and chrisronzio.com.
And today, Friday will be talking about a business playbook and what the heck it is. We'll talk about documentation in consistency, the intersection of ops and HR, and so much more. When we get back from thanking our sponsors Fire Nation, are you finally ready to publish a book the right way Kevin Anderson and associates can help for a limited time, they're offering Fire Nation a free 90 minute consultation to discuss writing and publishing your book in just six months. Visit KAWriting.com/fire to schedule your free 90 minute consultation today. That's KAWriting.com/fire. Chris say what's up to Fire Nation and share something that you believe about becoming successful.
0 (1m 30s):
That most people disagree with
1 (1m 33s):
Our nation. Amazing to be back. If you want something done, right, don't do it yourself. Train someone else to do it, or you'll be stuck doing it forever.
0 (1m 42s):
We're going to be getting into that Fire Nation because our episode today is about your business, which has 99 problems, but a playbook Fire Nation eight one. So Chris, let's just dive in brother, cause I wonder what the heck is a business playbook. And even more specifically, when do we know when we need to create one business
1 (2m 1s):
Playbook, pretty simply as just the owner's manual for your business. It says, who are you? What do you do? And how do you do each of those things? So this was a term we saw popping up over and over online and we just thought, we've got to define it. We've got to make this simple. So the way a playbook works is it's got the profile of your business, just like an online profile. Who are you? What do you do? What do you all about your values, your vision, your mission, then there's your people who are the people that work there and what makes them unique and special. Then every business has policies. What are the rules of engagement at work? And every business has processes, which are the how tos. And so you stitch all those things together, the profile, the people, the policies, the processes, and that is your business plan.
0 (2m 44s):
But when, when do we know when we need to create one, create
1 (2m 48s):
One is when you're doing things consistently in the business. If you're just getting started out, if you're still experimenting and throwing things at the wall to see what sticks, then it's not time to write something down yet. You, you, your listeners may have heard to write down their SOP is their processes. And then they end up changing them a week later because they feel out of date. So if that's you, if you're listening to this and you're still trying to figure out what works, then don't waste the time yet. But if you've got something repeatable, you're doing it over and over and over the same way. Now you can show someone else how to do it. So that's when to write it
0 (3m 19s):
Down. This brings me back to when I launched entrepreneurs on fire, like I was trying everything. I was literally a Jack of all trades, but I was also a master of none of those trades. I mean, I was throwing so much spaghetti against walls. I was just trying to figure things out. And I was just like, Hey, this worked, this didn't, this might work again. This might not, this is repeatable what it might look like. But then over time, it just like Chris was kind of insinuating. Things kind of started to settle in. I started seeing systems and processes that I was personally doing over and over and over again. And I'm like, there's a better way to do this. So let's talk about the importance, Chris, about documentation.
0 (4m 1s):
Let's talk about the importance of consistency. How can our listeners Fire Nation create a culture and their business and their life. That includes both of those documentation and consistency.
1 (4m 13s):
Yeah. So to grow a business, things need to happen consistently. If you were scattered and things were done differently every day of the week, then you just wouldn't get good customer reviews. You wouldn't build something that could actually scale and you'd be stuck in the grind everyday trying to figure it out. And so beyond just writing things down and making it a one-time exercise, you want this to actually live beyond you and become part of your business's culture. So the first step is don't try to delegate tasks. You want to delegate responsibilities in the business. There are different areas of responsibility that your team can actually take ownership of. And if you stop delegating tasks, like the ping pong balls back and forth, and actually delegate areas of the business, then you can hold people responsible to making sure that there's consistency in those areas of the business.
1 (4m 58s):
So the first step is delegating responsibilities, not tasks. The next thing I'd suggest is you want to review and revise your playbook pretty often. So depending on the size of your company, if you're listening to this, you might only hire a few people per year. And in that case, I'd say, let's make this an annual exercise. Let's go through how we do what we do and make sure it's up-to-date every year or maybe each time you hire and bring on a new person. If you're bringing on 25 or 50 or a hundred people a year, this may become a quarterly or a monthly exercise. But the good news is that you've delegated so much of those responsibilities, that your team is actually the one, keeping this up to date, and then you want to review, like I said, each time you're bringing a new hire on if you're the hiring manager, you're the one they report to just take a quick pass through what you're going to be assigning to them for their training, so that you make sure it's up to date that you didn't miss anything.
1 (5m 49s):
And then the last thing I'd recommend is anytime you find yourself, repeating yourself, saying the same thing over and over and over, you want to call that out. You want to have a little fun with it. So at our company, of course, we use our own system. So we say, you know, make a training tool for that. Or is there a train you for that? And it's a language that's just become part of our culture that way. If there is a meeting or a question that's happening over and over, there's an assignment of, Hey, can you write that down for everyone else?
0 (6m 16s):
I'm loving all of this and Fire Nation. What I really like is that Chris's just like Google kind of made their word a verb of like, yeah, just go Google it. Or yeah, I need to get a ride to the airport. Let's Uber. It let's make a train. You will, let's make a train. You will. I think that's just kind of a little side note of like something that you should try to be doing with your brand and your business, making that a verb, making that something that people are using on a day to day, month to month, year to year basis and reviewing and revising. I'll tell you personally, Fire Nation, we're doing this on a monthly basis. We're a very small team, but we get together every single month. And I have a certain number of things that we're going through to make sure that our delegation is in the right place, that our documentation is in the right place. That we're being consistent with everything that we want and need to be consistent with.
0 (6m 60s):
And this is the time that I love having my virtual assistants. My employees bring up things that they've been noticing over the past month trends that they've either liked or disliked or ideas that they've come up with because guess what? They are in the trenches. So that's why these are so important to have. And I love that you brought that up now, financial, we're gonna be talking about ops. We're going to talking about HR. What are we talking about? Just the overall business playbook Bible. When we get back from thanking our sponsors as a business owner, you don't just like to run your entire business from your inbox and let's be real. Sometimes things can get a bit messy. That's why there's a Streak.
0 (7m 40s):
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0 (8m 24s):
That's Streak.com/fire for 20% off their pro plan, Streak.com/fire Fire Nation. Do you realize the value being a published author brings to your business? As one of myself, I can honestly say a lot. So if you've ever considered writing a book, but feel like you don't have the time writing ability or idea to make it a success, then I've got great news for you. Kevin Anderson and associates is an industry leading all inclusive book writing firm that can help you go from no book to publish author in as little as six months Kevin's team has launched 19 number one, New York times bestsellers and hundreds of national bestselling books. You'll be able to work directly with those who helped launch the careers of the biggest names in the book business, including Bernay Brown, Simon Sinek, Robert Kiyosaki, and many more.
0 (9m 7s):
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0 (9m 47s):
So Chris, as I mentioned before, the break we're chatting right now about ops we're chatting about HR. We're chatting about the intersection of those two. How do top entrepreneurs thrive at that intersection of ops and HR? Well, there are two so
1 (10m 3s):
Crucial components to building any business. And I think when you're just getting started, you may be more focused on the operations, on how things actually work, our customers happy. And at some point in building a business, you change your focus from your customer experience. As the primary thing to now starting to put attention into your employee experience, are people happy? Are we attracting great talent? Are we retaining that talent? Do they have opportunity to grow here in the business? And the reality is these things are so intertwined. And so everything that we've talked about so far is really just who does what in a business, that's the HR side. And then how do you do each of those things in a business?
1 (10m 43s):
And that's the ops side. And so this fusion, this idea of a business playbook is addressing both of those things. So first on the HR side, when people get hired, they look through a job description, a job posting, and they might see a bulleted list of responsibilities that is you communicating to potential candidates. Here's what I expect of you. Now, when I was consulting and going into businesses, I saw that those expectations dramatically change over time. You take on so many new things, as you're helping a small business, you wear all these hats. And if you were to compare your job description at the time you were hired to what you actually do today, there may be a huge mismatch. And if that mismatch exists, there may also be a little bit of dissatisfaction with your happiness at work.
1 (11m 27s):
And so the idea of who does what the HR side is, making sure you're setting clear expectations about here's what we as a business expect of you. And is this the best use of your time? Is this something that makes you happy and fulfilled as an employee that works here? That's what the HR thing is all about. It's employee engagement, employee experience, and it's, it's leading and building a people first culture. And then on the flip side, the operations side, always addressing the how, because you're always looking to make your business more efficient, more productive. Is this the newest and best way to do this thing? Or is everybody still saying, well, I don't know. That's, we've always done it that way. That's how it's always been done.
1 (12m 8s):
Great businesses operate like yours does. And every month they're going through and sourcing best practices, new ideas from people to constantly make their business better. So it's at that intersection of HR and ops that real entrepreneurs thrive.
0 (12m 22s):
I think that's one question that I want to reiterate the Chris shared, which is asking yourself, Fire Nation, are you building a people first culture, such a critical question that very few businesses are asking on a regular basis. And if you are, you're bringing up the right things to talk about. And I specifically left a lot of time here at the end of the interview, Chris, to talk about the business playbook. This is actually a book that you wrote about how to document and delegate what you do. So your company can grow beyond you think about that Fire Nation, how to document and delegate what you do. So your company can grow beyond you.
0 (13m 2s):
Talk to us about this book. Let's kind of dive into some of the specifics. And of course we have for you Fire Nation, an ear resistible offer, take it away.
1 (13m 11s):
Yes. So the idea of the business playbook, like I said, it's the culmination of all of these colliding ideas about how do you build a people, centric people first kind of culture. How do you run your business? Like a machine with standard operating procedures and fine tuned, how to is for everything in the business. And so it all came together as, as this book, but it really started years and years ago at the beginning of my own entrepreneurial career. When I read the E-Myth by Michael Lee Gerber. And I'm sure a lot of your listeners have read that book. What I learned from that book is that you've got to work on the business, not just in the business, right? Like it's the most cliche thing he says. I think everybody has said it in hundreds of books since.
1 (13m 52s):
And I was so fortunate to have Michael himself write the foreword for my book. Because by working in your business, you learn how to make the business better by working on your business, you're now fine tuning it. So other people can work in the business for you. One of the things he always recommended was an operations manual. And so I set out to define how you actually create one of those in your business. And that's how we arrived at the business playbook. And that is what this book is all about. It is a guide to capturing the knowledge, the best practices. The policy is the culture that exists, that already exists in your business, not creating it from scratch, capturing it, crowdsourcing it, getting your team to contribute so that you have now that owner's manual for who does what and how you do each thing.
1 (14m 39s):
And you can get any new person up to speed and make sure your existing team is happy, productive, and helping you grow the company toward your vision.
0 (14m 47s):
So what Fire Nation gets this book, let's talk specifically how you best think that we can approach this. How can we apply it? Is it just read the whole book once and then go back and just implement step-by-step? Is it in some kind of sequential order or what is the best way to tackle the business playbook? So,
1 (15m 6s):
First it's a book you can read with your team and then sort of divide and conquer. It's divided into those four pieces that I mentioned earlier, profile people, policies, processes. And so it'll go through and teach you why you need those things. What the basics are that we've seen at train you all thousands and thousands of businesses document around the world. And then it'll have checklists that you can actually implement for your own business with tons of guides and resources. So I would say first read through it on your own. It's a short book. It's easy to scan and read through, and then you can actually assign out different areas of the book to the people that we'll be working on this with you. It's meant to be a super practical, how to guide so that you can actually have one of these playbooks in your company.
0 (15m 47s):
Now, what is that irresistible offer that I've been teasing Fire Nation with? So
1 (15m 53s):
The offer doesn't get much better than this. If you visit train you-all dot com, backslash EO fire, you put your information in and we will send you a free copy of the book. Shipping included a hundred percent free as soon as it comes out. So we appreciate so much what you've done in delivering value out to the community that we wanted to give copies of this book to all of your listeners. So if you are an avid listener and you're listening to this, please go to train ul.com, backslash EO fire, and get a hundred percent free. Copy
0 (16m 24s):
Of the book, Fire Nation. This isn't 10% off. This isn't five bucks off this. Isn't a free plus shipping, which happens to be $12 and 99 cent offer. No, this is you are going to fill out some very simple things and you're going to get this book delivered to you for free 100% free, not a single penny out of that pocket. Train you all.com/e oh, fire that's train T R a I N U a l.com/e oh, fire. And again, this is the business playbook, how to document and delegates what you do so that your company can grow beyond you.
0 (17m 4s):
Now, Chris, you dropped a ton of value bombs. Give us the one takeaway you want to make sure Fire Nation really gets from our entire conversation today. And then we'll say goodbye.
1 (17m 15s):
I started this off saying, if you want something done, right, don't do it yourself. It's funny how often in our ads online people say, oh, I've tried hiring people. It didn't work out. I'm just going to do everything myself. What I would leave people with is if you have that mentality, that you're just going to take everything under your control forever, then that's the ceiling on your business. Whereas if you can learn this skill to document, to delegate, to empower other people, then the sky's the limit. So I encourage everyone to download the free book and hopefully it opens up a ton of opportunity
0 (17m 47s):
For you Fire Nation. You're the average of the five people you spend the most time with. You've been hanging out with CR and JLD today. So keep up that heat. And of course, head over to EOFire.com type Chris in the search bar and the show notes page will pop up with everything that we've talked about here today. Best shows in the biz, but your direct call to action, trainual.com/fire. 100% free. The business playbook delivered to you. Chris, thank you for sharing your truth, knowledge value with Fire Nation today. For that we salute you and we'll catch you on the flip side.
1 (18m 22s):
Thanks so much the next time.
0 (18m 24s):
Hey, Fire Nation today's value bomb content was brought to you by Chris and Fire Nation. Over the last decade, I've interviewed more than 3000 of the world's most successful entrepreneurs, and I've created a revolutionary 17 step roadmap to your financial freedom and your fulfillment. And I put it all into my first traditionally published book. The Common Path to Uncommon Success has been personally endorsed by Seth Goden by Gary Vaynerchuk and so many others. The Common Path to Uncommon Success is the step-by-step guidance that you need via nation to achieve the lifestyle of yo grooms, visit UncommonSuccessBook.com or your copy today, and I'll catch you there.
0 (19m 4s):
Or on the flip side, Fire Nation, are you finally ready to publish a book the right way Kevin Anderson and associates can help for a limited time, they're offering Fire Nation a free 90 minute consultation to discuss writing and publishing your book in just six months. Visit KAWriting.com/fire to schedule your free 90 minute consultation today. That's KAWriting.com/fire.
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