All posts by Benjamin Brandall


What is a Workflow? A Simple Guide to Getting Started

what is a workflow

If you look at the Wikipedia definition of a workflow, you’re probably going to get confused as I did:

“A workflow consists of an orchestrated and repeatable pattern of business activity enabled by the systematic organization of resources into processes that transform materials, provide services, or process information It can be depicted as a sequence of operations, declared as work of a person or group, an organization of staff, or one or more simple or complex mechanisms.”

Let’s put this simply…

Workflows are the way people get work done, and can be illustrated as series of steps that need to be completed sequentially in a diagram or checklist.

Think of it literally as work flowing from one stage to the next, whether that’s through a colleague, tool, or another process. You can execute a full workflow alone (like writing, editing and publishing a blog post), or it can involve multiple people (like invoicing a client).

In this Process Street article, we’ll be looking at:

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How to Create a Runbook: A Guide for Sysadmins & MSPs

create a runbook

How do you name a new server, export config data, or fix that one really annoying bug that keeps popping up every 2nd Thursday?

For prepared IT professionals, that information is stored in a runbook. A runbook is a set of standardized documents, references and procedures that explain common recurring IT tasks. Instead of figuring out the same problem time and time again, you can refer to your runbook for an optimal way to get the work done. What’s more, you can also delegate tasks and onboard employees more effectively if you have documentation to train them with.

Whenever you do a task, think of this quote:

“Will you remember how to do these things 6 months from now? I find myself having to re-invent a process from scratch if I haven’t done it in a few months (or sometimes just a few days!). Not only do I reinvent the process, I repeat all my old mistakes and learn from them again. What a waste of time.” — Tom Limoncelli, The Operations Report Card

In short, the less time wasted figuring out how to do a task, the better it’ll be for your business efficiency, productivity, and sanity.

This post will look at:

First, let’s look at two example runbooks to give context on what I’m going to talk about.
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The Best Checklist App Ever Created? 9 Tools to Try Today

checklist app

Finding the best checklist app isn’t easy. I’ve written about my pains with productivity before, and I’m not the only one who has trouble sorting themselves out — you probably don’t know which productivity solution is best for you, either.

Part of the problem is that there are so many different apps for slightly different purposes, it’s hard to know which to choose…

Which is why, for this post, I’ve gone in search of the best checklist app ever created, and found some pretty under-the-radar stuff as well as apps most people already know!

Read through these sections to get completely clued-up:

Let’s get started.

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18 Software Documentation Tools that Do The Hard Work For You

2-Software Documentation

Without documentation, software is just a black box. And black boxes aren’t anywhere near as useful as they could be because their inner workings are hidden from those who need them in the open.

Software documentation turns your software into a glass box by explaining to users and developers how it operates or is used.

You’ve probably seen documentation before, but if you need a refresher, here’s an example from Slack‘s API:

Slack API Documentation-d

As you can see, Slack explains everything about its API in excruciating detail. Any related pages are linked, there’s a sidebar with easy-to-access topics, and screenshots of what the user can expect to see.

To explain software documentation in more detail, we will cover the following topics in this Process Street post:

Let’s get started.

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How to Write a Proposal and Get What You Want (Free Templates)

how to write a proposal

✅ Bonus material: Simple Proposal Format Template + Checklist to help you get started ASAP!

A proposal has a lot of different purposes, but there’s only one good way to write one: the way that pulls together all of the information in a concise and persuasive way and helps you get what you want … whether that’s a whole new software system, or just a tweak to your marketing strategy.

This Process Street article isn’t about a business proposal — also known as a quote — but instead about the document required when formally pitching an idea for action and execution by managers or department heads.

To explain how to write a proposal document and get what you want, we’ll go through the following:

Let’s get started.

process street banner green final

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SaaS Customer Support: The 4 Moments of Truth

This is a guest post from Rhiza Oyos, the inbound marketing manager at Spiralytics.

SaaS Customer Support

Customers relationships are the lifeblood of every SaaS business. However, regardless of their years of operation, there are moments when these relationships can — for better or worse — dramatically change

A customer’s experience is everything. It helps SaaS companies attract customers, retain them, and generate referrals

So, businesses who understand the importance of customer experience end up winning the race and beating the competition. In particular, winning companies are those that understand the human factors and emotions at play in experience, design, and production.

Harley Manning in a 2012 article for Fast Company writes:

“In other words, if you want that next sale, if you want good word of mouth, and if you want to keep your customers, it’s unlikely that anything else you do matters more than delivering a superior experience”

Experience is all about moments.

In designing an exemplary customer experience, businesses should know about the four moments of truth that can help them get ahead.

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Content Creation: What I’ve Learned From Writing 157 Articles This Year

Content Creation

We’ve all been baited into those lists of recycled tips where the author lists 10,000 excruciating content creation tips, all of which you’ve heard over and over again.

I’m pretty sick of it, so thought I’d compile something from my personal experience from a year of writing.

This is stuff I’ve had to learn pretty quick since I ‘fell into’ control of the Process Street blog. I think it’s time to give the marketing community something new that they can use and ditch the typical list post content we’ve all seen trotted out over and over.

Whichever part of the content creation process you’re at, there’s a nugget of wisdom for you here.

Let’s get started.

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How to Set your Favorite Webmail as a Default Mail Client

Set Default Mail Client

You click the ‘Contact Us’ page. Nothing happens. First, confusion, then familiar frustration. It was a mailto link. Your computer slows to a grinding halt as a huge, archaic desktop mail app rises from the depths of your hard drive. Checking that the date on your computer isn’t 15 years out, you wonder why mail integration isn’t standard… and what year is it exactly?

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My 5 Favorite Hacks from the Duct Tape Marketing System

tape edges (3)

In my last post for Process Street (and the first after being hired as a full-time content writer!) I took a look at the Duct Tape Marketing System and published the Duct Tape Marketing System review previously, but today I’m bringing you the top five hacks from this innovative course by small business expert John Jantsch. These are points John made that resonated with me as a unique take on something that seems obsolete or a new angle on something too well-established to be changed.

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How to Generate Leads with Content Upgrades

How to generate leads

The Currency of the Internet

Pretty much everything is free on the internet.

One of the reasons you like it so much is because you can get a ton of value for just the price of your monthly contract. With millions of books, videos, podcasts, services and apps around for free, it’s no wonder people are hesitant to part with their money without trust and priming first.

So how can people built sustainable businesses by giving away so much good stuff for free?

Well, there are generally two ways.

1. They sell ads, you probably know this model well if you have ever used Google or Facebook.
2. They capture leads with the hope to sell you something in the future.

In this post, we will be focusing on the latter: Lead generation.

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