*Image from the History of Barbing in the 1700’s
*Kinyozi wa mtaa – Kenyan colloquial for local barber



I have joyfully stuck to one barber for the last ten years, and with good reason . . . I love the service there. It may seem routine and a tad bit boring, but I (and I believe many more men) love the fact the fact that I can predict the quality service offered. This always makes me yearn and anticipate for the next shave.

That is the beauty of a system in a brand . . . it ensures the same quality delivered and therefore keeps customers yearning and anticipating for their next interaction with the brand

So, how do you put together a system?



What is it that you do to a product in order to have it complete? What ingredients do you add and in what quantities and at what intervals? If it is a service, what do you do for your client from when they come in for the service to when they live? What instruments or equipment do you use to serve your client? How long does it take to serve a client etc.

Once you have identified this routine . . .



Write down the routine step-by-step.


List down each step of the service, from when the client enquires of the service to when the client has received the full service. Include the equipment needed at each step of the service. Consider how long each step of the service takes. Calculate the cost incurred at each step of the service etc.


List down each step taken in creating the product. Document the equipment used at each stage of production. Itemize all the ingredients needed at each step, and how each is used in quantities for example. Remember to calculate the cost incurred at each step of production.

STEP 3: maintain THE ROUTINE

Now that you have a the routine documented, follow the routine to the letter. As you do so, take note of:

Stages that can be executed better, if changed

Stages that maybe redundant over time etc.

In essence, by strictly keeping to the routine, observe the routine and therefore note areas that can be made better in the routine, or in other words . . .

STEP 4: optimize THE ROUTINE

Spend time changing the routine to best fit the creation process of the product or the service delivery path taken for a service. Document each change made and then add it to routine followed.

Please note, that Step 2, 3 and 4 are ongoing processes where each feed into the next.