Ever picked up a new skill and suddenly you see it everywhere? Kinda like when you learn a new word and then you hear it in every conversation.

For me, it was when I delved into the world of marketing. Soon enough, I was spotting marketing strategies (and often their flaws) all around me.

But let me tell you, automation is a whole different animal. Once you get a taste of what process automation can do, it's like a bag of chips - you just can't stop! You want to automate everything - your work, your home, even your wardrobe.

But here's the cold hard truth from basically any automation specialist: cleaning up an automation mess usually takes three times as long as setting up the damn thing. So, to save you from biting off more than you can chew, I got a top 10 list that will save you a hell of a lot of trouble.

1. The Un-automatable

You Can't Automate Everything: Just because you want to automate your daily workout doesn't mean you can. You still gotta get off your butt and sweat it out. But hey, you can automate reminders and schedule time for exercise. (Think part of the process, instead of the whole apple)

2. Low-Frequency Processes

If something doesn't happen often, don't automate. That once-in-a-blue-moon funny awards ceremony? Keep it spontaneous!

3. Unstandardized Processes

If your process is still a work-in-progress, don't jump into automating it. First get your ducks in a row, then think about bringing in the bots. (Otherwise you might just waste time on automation, where it could be spent).

4. Cost vs. Benefit

If it's cheaper and quicker to do manually, stick to it. Remember, bots are here to save your bucks, not burn a hole in your pocket.

5. Empathy Required

Some stuff needs empathy, and last time I checked, robots didn't do empathy. Automation is impersonal. So in situations that need a little TLC, stick to humans.

6. Creative Problem Solving

Bots are great, but they're not really great thinkers. For problems that need a creative touch, you might want a human in the driver's seat.

7. Need for Oversight

If there's no supervision for the automation, and an issue arises that the automated system can't handle, the consequences could be disastrous. If there's no one to oversee the process, don't automate. Even bots need a babysitter from time to time!

8. Knowledge is Power

Diving into automation without a thorough understanding can have catastrophic results. Ensure you're well-versed with the process before automating it, especially when sensitive data is involved.

9. Culture and Morale

Might Ruffle Feathers? Think Twice: If going full-on automation might give your team a scare, maybe slow down a notch. Better to ease into it than cause a mutiny!

10. Respect Authority

If the boss man or lady said no, don't push it. Pick your battles. Maybe show them how cool automation can be with your own projects first.

At the end of the day, deciding to automate isn't a one-size-fits-all kind of thing. It's about figuring out what works best for your team and your business. Just remember - while automation can be a game-changer, it's not always the answer. Sometimes, good old-fashioned elbow grease does the trick! It's important to strike a balance between the advantages of automation and the unique requirements of each process.

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