Fast and Easy SOPs: Your Step-By-Step Guide

Does this sound familiar?

One of your people, unsure of a process, stumbles through their task, making preventable mistakes. Meanwhile, an experienced team member is swamped with questions, eating into their productive time. This cycle of inefficiency creates frustration and inconsistency in results, ultimately leading to the diminished performance of your entire business.

This scenario is a shared experience for many businesses, largely due to a lack of well-documented Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) and core processes.

Why is this often the case? Business owners frequently find themselves overwhelmed by the enormity of the task, or too entwined in the day-to-day running of their business to find time to step back and work on it.

But imagine this: a systematic, easy-to-follow method to document your processes that not only simplifies your operations but also becomes an engaging exercise in itself.

The benefits of methodically documenting your core processes and SOPs are manifold. Not only do they lead to increased productivity and efficiency, they make employee onboarding smoother and continuous improvement more accessible by highlighting areas for refinement.

And, crucially, they free up your most valuable resource: your time.

As a business owner, your time is invaluable. By documenting your processes, you reclaim precious hours, enabling you to focus on high-value tasks to grow your business. What’s more, a business that can run smoothly without constant owner intervention is not just easier to manage and more profitable—it’s more attractive to potential buyers who will pay a premium for a self-sustaining business.

To begin this journey, you’ll need two simple tools: Loom and Notion. Loom is a video recording tool that lets you capture your screen and voice, while Notion is an all-in-one workspace for your notes, tasks, wikis, databases, and project management.

So, how do you tackle this task without it feeling daunting?

4 Simple Steps to Document Your Processes

The process is more straightforward—and enjoyable—than you might think:

  1. Bullet point or outline a core process: Start by breaking down a task into manageable steps. No need for complexity, just a simple guide for the task at hand.
  2. Create a Loom recording: Turn on Loom and articulate the process, highlighting its importance, the specific steps, and any nuances.
  3. Document it in Notion: I use Notion to house all my SOPs. Simply drop your video atop a new Notion page.
  4. Leverage AI for transcription: Use an AI, like Notion’s AI or ChatGPT, to transform your Loom transcript into a comprehensive SOP that includes checklist items and specific steps.

There’s no task or procedure that you can’t explain in a video. You don’t need high quality production, you just need to spend the time to think through your processes and communicate them clearly one time so they’re recorded forever.

This method creates an invaluable resource: a detailed guide that provides your team with your expert insights on what needs to be done, why it matters, and how to do it. With additional resources such as links, images, and documents incorporated into the guide, you’re essentially replicating yourself.

Having this level of detailed guidance gives your employees the ‘guardrails’ they need to excel. It allows them to operate with confidence, knowing they’re adhering to the correct procedures. And with fewer interruptions for questions, everyone’s productivity soars, and your business operations run smoother.

Over the coming weeks, we’ll delve into identifying core processes, and I’ll even share some of my own examples. This journey into streamlining your business operations promises to be transformative, so stay tuned!

This week, bullet point and undocumented process, flip on the camera, and make an SOP.