Execution and Results

February 29, 2008

Maybe it is because of my technical background. But I have found that suggesting, recommending, or hoping that a broken server would fix itself, or that the implementation of a technology solution would materialize by itself never worked for me.

What did get it fixed or implemented was focusing on the current issue, looking at deliverables for short, medium and longer term, then seeing how we were meeting them.

I have provided tactical and strategic consulting to various sizes of organizations over the years, and been involved with organization that have executed well, and some that have not.

A shotgun approach of ideas, concerns, issues, directions and goals simply leads to a scattered half hearted attempt at defining a fuzzy idea into a fuzzier output or requirement.

The print heading of A Canadian Business article here puts it quite succinctly;

The goal of business isn’t to generate activity; it’s to produce results

Geoffrey Moore says it in “Crossing the Chasm” (see influential reading on this site) – sharply focus on one point in your market push. Just as an army does, you cannot attack over a wide area, you break through with point thrusts and widen the wedge.

Ram Charan and Larry Bossidy on Execution (also in influential reading) is solely dedicated to it.

In the SMB space, doubly so if you are growing, it can be difficult to carve out the time required to properly execute. But it is a necessary component for growing your business. I am not going to write all that is in those referenced texts, but in short;

You and your team need to identify the one or two most important issues or goals covering the short and medium term, along with your longer term vision. Keep it in focus, and avoid the shotgun approach of too many, or too scattered ideas or initiatives. With these goals communicated, ensure that regular and formal updates and “SitReps” (situation reports) are presented. Right up until the time you sign off on the fact that it is either completely finished, or you have chosen not to further pursue the issue or idea.

I personally prefer a more formalized Project Management methodology, but the exact structure may vary depending on organization size and type. What cannot vary is that there are particular duties or tasks that are explicitly assigned with explicit deliverables. And that regular scheduled updates are recieved on the status of these deliverables. This ensures that everybody understands the relative importance of each issue or goal, which helps ensure that time is not wasted working on less important, or lower value work.

Carving out that time may seem difficult at first, but that investment will save a lot of time and wasted resources over the longer term.

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3 Responses to “Execution and Results”

  1. elliotross Says:

    Juan, Gracias por visitar.

    My Spanish is non-existent, so I am trusting this is not **too** off colour ūüôā

    Regards.

  2. juan ramon vassallo Says:

    ESTIMADO

    VOY A DAR UN SEMINARIO SOBRE DISE√ĎANDO EL FUTURO EN TIEMPO DE CRISIS , Y HE ELEGIDO SU PORTADA EN DINERO
    PARA TRNSMITIR EL MENSAJE DE QUE NADA SE PUEDE HACER SOLO.
    ME GUSTARIA QUE ME RESUMA EN TRES FRASES CUAL ES SU PENSAMIENTO PARA ACONSEJAR A LA EMPRESAS PARA SALIR DE LA CRISIS

    UN SALUDO DISTINGIDO

    ING VASSALLO


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