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A Model That Works...

"The Certus team helped me find new leadership and a business model that works. I love working with Tim, he "get's me". As a business owner living in Texas with a business located in Minnesota, I need a straight shooter that doesn't waste my time. Tell you what, they don't shoot any straighter than Tim. My only complaint is that I hate it when I ignore Tim's advice, and have to admit (again) that he was right."

- David Melanson - Texas Entrepreneur

Total Management System: The 7 Layers of Success™

The Total Management System™ (TMS) model was developed after years of watching great companies perform at high levels, and watching poorly run companies fail. Certus has seen it all, and now the TMS model can help your company become great, and perform at the highest level possible.

Certus Seven Layers of Success

How to Understand the Model

The goal of this tool is to help business owners understand that it is RARELY their people that make mistakes, but rather good people following poorly defined or weakly managed processes.

The key element of the model is to understand that ALL problems in your business MUST be solved from THE CUSTOMER'S POINT OF VIEW.

Customer's Point of View

Why this insistence? Simple. Solving problems from the employee or the investor's point of view will always result in a decision that will ultimately drive your customers away. The single fact that most businesses fail to recognize is that without customers (particularly repeat customers), you don't have a business. Period. End of debate.

You can have the best people, a strong balance sheet, and attractive returns for your investors, etc. Without customers, you got squat!

Most business owners are pretty good at quickly responding to problems, and making it right for the customer. The real question is whether the solution that is put in place has addressed the true root cause of the problem. Certus has learned that the answer is usually "NO". Why? There is usually very little interest or patience in conducting a process review (assuming there is a defined set of processes in the first place) to determine how did the problem happen, and what do we need to adjust to avoid it happening again.

The TMS model provides business owners with a "short-hand" tool for getting to the root cause.

The Total Management System™ in Action

Let's take an example of a typical business problem, and use the model as a tool to better understand what happened and what needs to change to avoid the problem in the future:

Business Problem: Important Order Shipped Late, the Customer is Pissed Off!

Angry Customer

Solving the problem using the TMS model:

  1. Planning: Do we have a shipping on-time to our customers as an organization priority?
  2. Culture: How much is on-time shipping emphasized by management?
  3. Sales: Did we make promises we knew we couldn't keep?
  4. Operations: Did we preview the order, forecast production time, and compare to promised dates before we started production?
  5. Skills: Do our production and shipping people have the needed skills to build and ship this order on time. Did we try to do something we have never done before?
  6. Key Performance Indicators: Do we have them? Do we have an early warning system or key metrics, that allows us to determine if we are behind schedule before it's too late?
  7. You: What was my role in this mess? Did I create an atmosphere that discouraged any concerns about shipping on time from being discussed? Do I shoot the messenger when problems are surfaced? Do I blame people vs investigate processes?

Using this model, the business owner can stop at any time, and say "Ah, yes, that's it. That's exactly where the problem started, and we can fix that."

By using the Certus Total Management System™ model, business owners can refocus their energy and talents where it belongs: Growing the Business!