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11 Ways to Automate Your Business and Boost Efficiency

Too often, repetition, waste, and unnecessary bureaucracy slow down business. Members of The Oracles share their systems to streamline your business to run like a Swiss watch.

1. Implement AI and machine learning.

It’s now possible to convert your business metrics into data points and then turn those data points over to an artificial intelligence engine that optimizes many things like price and digital marketing spend. Getting familiar with artificial intelligence and machine learning is crucial.

Get your company on the Google Cloud or Microsoft Azure. Google Cloud has built-in tools for automation and you’ll automatically get the latest advancements as Google regularly updates it. Microsoft Azure is coming along right behind them and is priced competitively. With the right machine-learning tools, you can achieve maximum efficiency and turbocharge your business. —Patrick Byrne, CEO of Overstock.com and tZERO

2. Create both a sales cycle and business cycle.

A sales cycle starts when a customer shows interest and ends when they buy. With a business cycle, you market and drive people toward your product or service. Most people don’t have the money to establish a business cycle when starting out. Big corporations live in the business cycle. They spend money creating traffic. To automate, you need a business cycle that gets constant eyeballs on your business. —Grant Cardone, top sales expert who has built a $500-million real estate empire, and NYT-bestselling author; follow Grant on Facebook or YouTube

3. Look for repetition.

To find missed automation opportunities, I get my team together to discuss what we’re doing that is repetitive. Then, we look for an automated solution that can perform the task as well or better, while delivering exceptional service. We’ve had great success in taking menial tasks like sorting and responding to emails and automating them. This enhanced rather than harmed the customer experience. —Tim Draper, VC, founder of Draper Associates and DFJ

4. Make it simple and repeatable.

Automation does not need to be complicated to be effective. A complicated system requires more maintenance and is vulnerable to breaking. Each day, people apply to our program and book a call with one of our author development coaches. Our author liaison matches the applications with appointments, so calls are distributed fairly, and appointments are booked quickly. —Rob Kosberg, #1 bestselling author and CEO of Best Seller Publishing, whose strategies have positioned U.S. Ambassadors, professional athletes, and CEOs as thought leaders

5. Have a nuclear team, plus ninja contractors.

Sam Walton, the founder of Walmart, said, “The best management style is not to micromanage or be completely hands-off; it’s to look over the shoulder.”

No one does everything well so I hire a fleet of super-specialized “ninja contractors” for specific tasks like social media, email marketing, and copywriting. Meanwhile, my small team of full-time team manages everything else, with me looking over their shoulder.

Automation means building the most efficient team around you. By outsourcing specific tasks to contractors, you cut costs. And since you’re not their only income source, they don’t drag things out. —Tai Lopez, investor and advisor to multiple multimillion-dollar businesses, who has built an eight-figure online empire; connect with Tai on Snapchat, Facebook, Instagram, or YouTube

6. Only work 20 minutes a day.

I set my e-commerce business up so I only need to contribute 20 minutes per day to keep things running. At first, I ran everything, then gradually replaced myself. My obstacle was trusting other people to do my job. But when you invest time and money into others, they often become even better than you!

It’s essential to train new people and create standard operating procedures, so your team knows how to handle problems. For my first customer support agent, I copied all my email threads into a document. At that point, I’d answered every question a customer could have, so when an inquiry came in, she knew exactly how to respond. —Jared Goetz, serial entrepreneur and e-commerce expert; co-founder of four multimillion-dollar companies in five years

7. Empower, educate, and outsource.

Having a team that takes ownership of your business is paramount. Set clear policies and procedures, and encourage their input. Educate your team by providing supportive, ongoing mentorship coupled with knowledge assessments via the Socratic method (which focuses on asking questions instead of providing answers).

Then, outsource the necessities with trusted experts in areas like marketing, sales, billing, collections, bookkeeping, and incoming calls. This keeps the business running. —LeNae Goolsby, cofounder of Infinite Health and founder of Empowered Medicine TV

8. Streamline task management and communication.

We use Slack and Trello to centralize communications and tasks so nothing slips through the cracks.

With that in place, create defined roles so a virtual assistant can route tasks to the appropriate team member. Tools like ScheduleOnce can automate appointments.

When making systems for employees, I use a two-step process: film yourself doing a task with a tool like Loom, then break that video down into a checklist of steps. —Joshua Harris, founder of Agency Growth Secrets; teaches entrepreneurs how to use machine learning and AI to produce unbeatable client results

9. Commit to a five-step plan.

One, learn everything yourself. Learn the ins and outs of the most critical positions so you can replace yourself. Two, don’t spend company money. Pay yourself a salary and only spend that. Three, know your weakness. Hiring a COO was the smartest investment I ever made. He took my weakness (documenting procedures) and made it a strength of our organization. Four, know the mental makeup that every position requires and hire for that. Five, let it go! There are people much better than you at a particular function in your business. Trust them to do their job. —Danny Morel, author of “The Resilience Roadmap” and founder of M.PIRE university; connect with Danny on Facebook and Instagram

10. Be patient, with a human touch.

Unless your new business is an app, most businesses require personal attention and a “human touch” to start. A new business can’t be automated out of the box.

Be patient. Take the time to make sure your business is working smoothly, and keep bringing a personal, human touch as you grow. Over time, figure a way to automate just those areas of your business that won’t affect the customer getting excellent service.

You don’t want to lose a first-time customer in a new business by not having your process personally tailored to their experience. —Ken Lebovic, president of North Shore Holdings; built a real estate empire acquiring thousands of properties in 20 years

11. Commit to delivering consistent delight.

When I first met Issy Sharp, founder of Four Seasons Hotels, he told me something that stuck with me: “Systematize the predictable. Humanize the exceptional.”

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36 Comments

  1. Reply

    God bless you for the time you brought to share this with us

  2. Reply

    Nice

  3. Reply

    This is cool and very helpful

  4. Reply

    Very helpful

  5. Reply

    Good and interesting

  6. Reply

    Nice

  7. Reply

    Nice

  8. Reply

    Wonderful

  9. Reply

    Very cool

  10. Reply

    How can working 20mins per day boost efficiency.
    I think these are already established business with automated system.
    Newly developing ones needs to work round the clock to get their businesses solidly established

  11. Reply

    Cool

  12. Reply

    Good

  13. Reply

    God bless you …thanks for the information

  14. Reply

    Good article

  15. Reply

    Good to know

  16. Reply

    Very good information

  17. Reply

    Good info

  18. Reply

    Nice piece

  19. Reply

    Wow, this is actually a good piece of information

  20. Reply

    Good write up

  21. Profile photo ofSommycruz

    Reply

    Nice write up

  22. Profile photo ofItz Kvng Twitch

    Reply

    Very interesting

  23. Reply

    This is amazing

  24. Reply

    Very accurate

  25. Reply

    Nice info

  26. Reply

    I wonder how 20minutes will bust efficiency

  27. Reply

    Good update

  28. Profile photo ofOlatunbosun

    Reply

    Awesome

  29. Reply

    Awesome

  30. Reply

    Thanks for this

  31. Reply

    Educative

  32. Reply

    Great information

  33. Reply

    Wonderful update

  34. Reply

    Wonderful information

  35. Reply

    Nice
    Thanks for sharing

  36. Reply

    Interesting

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