Build a Machine Checklist

The Build Your Business Machine Checklist

This is a checklist that identifies the steps required to build your business machine. This is an ocean of tasks, and you can’t boil the sea in a day. In a perfect world, you begin with Start, move to Grow, then follow that up with Manage.

In reality, you may have to do a few things from Manage today, work a bit on your customer journey in Grow, then come back to complete Start. That is the messiness of life.

A non-linear approach is fine, but you will eventually have to complete everything on the list to get off the rollercoaster. A machine doesn’t work if the pieces aren’t in place… It might hobble along a bit, but it won’t run.


Who are you? 

How you make money

The business model ensures that you create an entity that exists beyond just you

How to become irresistible (to your customer) 

Resonant ID is a different way to think of a brand. It is who you are and how you stand out in the market. A brand is often confused with logos and colors, so we use the term Resonant ID. We will go into this more deeply in “grow,” but you must have some concept of your ID from the beginning, so start with

These together are the problem you solve and for whom, which is a critical part of your marketing strategy and communication

Get shtuff done

The execution engine drives the business forward – it helps you work backward from the future.


Design Your Predictable Sales Process

This is the process by which strangers become customers and customers become raving fans.

Implement Sales Strategy

Complete the sale.

  • Define Sales Process (AC)
  • Create Proposals (AC)

Create Content

Content drives sales and marketing. Content is how you show people what you do and how. So, we create a strategy for content.

Implement Basic Systems

There are some basic systems that you must have in place. You have to have your own domain, email set up and need a basic brand presence.

  • Buy your domain (SD)
  • Decent website. 
  • Create @yourdomain email addresses (SD)
  • Implement a simple website (AC)
  • Implement bulk emailing system (AC)
  • Implement CRM (AC)
  • Logo, brand colors, and brand assets (AC)
  • Better budget. 
  • A way to invoice (invoicing templates). 


Once you have a machine, you must drive it, tune it and reinvent it. That is the manage part of the process. Since you are operating your business while building it, some of the tools here will be helpful throughout the process. This is the future-focused part of your machine.


  • Define Leadership Team (SD)
  • Start daily huddle meetings (SD)
  • Start weekly meetings (SD)

Define The Path

The path is critical for growth and engaging other people in your business. It keeps your team together and focused on your business objectives.

The Compass Course covers all of these:

Create a Strategy

The strategy helps you focus and brings in an element of competition. Up until now, we are defining the game; strategy is about how you will play it.

These are covered in the Compass Course and Design your strategy guide/template.

  • SWOT Analysis (SD)
  • Strategic Objective (SD)
  • Strategic Scope (SD)
  • Strategic Actions (SD)
  • Strategy Statement (SD)

Create Planning Lists

These lists are for task tracking and ensuring you are getting the things you need to get done.

Make better decisions

Decision tools help you clarify ideas and make choices that are more likely to improve your business.

  • Scenario planning (ME)
  • Decision trees (ME)

Identify Key Activities

We go into key activities in the strategy, but here we explore them in more depth and develop a repeatable process that we can follow.

Customer Feedback

Use feedback to enhance your offering and ensure that you are delivering effectively.


At this stage, you will start to build your team. This means establishing roles and responsibilities.  Even if the people in your organization have multiple roles

  • Hat Map (DC)
  • Position descriptions / contracts (DC)
  • Position metrics (DC)
  • Performance evaluation (DC)

Recruiting and hiring

As your team grows, you will have to get good at building the team.

Staying Ahead

Information and constant development are key to staying ahead of the market and having a flow of new business.

  • Product Roadmap (ME)
  • Profit First (DC)
  • Financial model – budget (DC)
  • Innovation (ME)

Maximizing Customer Value

Information and constant development are key to staying ahead of the market and having a flow of new business.

  • Upsell/Cross-sell (again) (ME)
  • Customer optimization (Lifetime value) (ME)

Acquiring Companies

One path to continued growth and long-term expansion is acquisition, which involves valuations, process, and integration.

  • Valuing acquisitions (ME)
  • Integrating acquisitions (ME)
  • Valuing divestments (ME)

Release Notes

This is version 1.0, so it is the beginning!  As we make changes to the list, we will highlight the changes here, this way you can see what’s new without having to compare versions.