The Delta Airlines app on my phone recently did an update and I was delighted to learn that they have eliminated the check-in process. Boarding passes will now automatically populate 24 hours before a flight, saving thousands of passengers from tracking down a computer and verifying that they will, in fact, use the non-refundable seat that they have paid hundreds of dollars to buy.

I suspect that airline check-ins have been a staple of the process since commercial flight began. I also imagine that many of those who have a seat that they don’t use still have checked in for the flight: an emergency came up at the last minute, their incoming flight was late so they missed the connection, they were held up en route or at TSA, etc.

I applaud the person who had the wisdom to question this long-standing practice and ask if the value outweighed the inconvenience to passengers. It was something that was taken for granted as part of the process that did not need to remain.

Maybe it is time for you to step back and evaluate the processes that have not been questioned for years. Tom Wujec’s How to Draw Toast may help you structure this exercise. What do you require of your clients that has outlived its usefulness: filling out forms instead of updating them to register each year? Requiring clients to show the same insurance card for each visit? Printing out pages of medication instructions for renewals?

If Delta can fly without manual check-ins, what can you do to travel lighter with your processes?

About the Author leadership dots by dr. beth triplett

Dr. beth triplett is the owner of leadership dots, offering coaching, training and consulting for new supervisors. She also shares daily lessons on her leadershipdots blog. Her work is based on the leadership dots philosophy that change happens through the intentional connecting of small steps in the short term to the big picture in the long term.

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