Christian Leborg
Boat. Rudder

How to lead a process

People execute processes to create something valuable.

What is process leadership? Process leadership involves establishing and running processes within an organisation so that the right things are made, of acceptable quality, as effectively as possible. Processes are created through projects. They have costs attached to them, partially recovered when the process is repeated. The process creates value for customers and produces returns for stakeholders.

Why do entrepreneurs lead processes? By taking leadership, entrepreneurs establish what the objectives of the process are, not just the steps within the process. They then develop, implement, maintain and control processes. Process management focuses on getting the steps right, while process leadership focuses on getting the objectives right. If the processes aren’t effective, they don’t have any value.

How do entrepreneurs lead processes? The first step is to define what the objectives should be for the process: what will this process do, and who benefits from it? Processes often function in several sections of an organisation, which makes the design of the process much more complex. Important questions are: what transformation will happen, and what constraints are there?

“ If you can't describe what you are doing as a process, you don't know what you're doing”.– W. Edwards Deming

When is process leadership important? Business process management without business process leadership is like a boat without a rudder. Even if a new process is developed, it may take a long time before it can be successfully applied. New processes need leadership to be applied successfully.

Who are the leaders of processes? Leaders of a company must use the same philosophy and strategy to define what is right for each business process as they do for each function. To develop a well functioning process, leaders have to ask who benefits from it, and who has other interests in this process?

Where does leadership of processes take place? The creation of new production or service processes has to be immersed in the manufacturing environment or close to the service interaction. Processes resist change and are managed, not led, unless they are to be changed. Processes can be successfully changed through a project with planning and effort.

The introduction of digital tools has made me as a designer change my workflows and service processes numerous times. It is only recently that I started to enjoy the process of change.”

Have you used entrepreneurial actions to establish new processes? Please share your experiences.

Vijay Kumar (2012) 101 Design Methods
Christian Leborg

Christian Leborg

Christian Leborg is a visual communicator and branding consultant. He specialises in building brand strategies and brand identities. Christian has worked with several specializations within visual communication as well as teaching and being an author. Christian now works on his third stint as an entrepreneur.