As we become more familiar with the Promise Culture Compass and use it to keep your successful business pointing in the correct direction, we need to consider how we navigate using the model. We therefore look at the navigation systems. This part of the model includes such aspects as identifying the destination you are wanting to arrive at and the plan and path to get there (the map). Additionally, having metrics to track progress, evaluation, and feedback loops to make the necessary adjustments to the plan when data indicates an alteration is needed. This also promotes learning from what has taken place and applying that understanding and knowledge moving forward. It may also include a conscious choice to upgrade approaches to meet with newly identified challenges.
Note here that having a plan, roadmap, and predetermined path to the destination at the beginning of an effort reduces the possibilities of getting sidetracked. Our business world is filled with plenty of distractions. From employee, customer and vendor dynamics let alone the competition, the path you travel is filled with twists, turns, potholes and slippery surfaces. We must keep the use of the roadmap as the basic guide and not the absolute only way to arrive at the end goal. It should keep us from chasing shiny objects or squirrels which have nothing to do with the focus but jump in the path and distract us from our objectives.
Along the journey we need feedback on how well or poorly we are achieving our progress. When we consider a trip by car, we might know miles to be driven, time on the road between stops etc. Each of these are metrics used to gauge progress. If we set out to drive a certain distance in a defined amount of time and we arrive there outside of the pre-determined metric, then we take that feedback and make adjustments to our plan. It is additional information we get once on the journey which did not exist at the beginning. If we have no metrics or measurements to qualify progress, then any old result is what you get.
As part of navigating, not only do we need metrics for identifying progress, but we also need a system for capturing when and how metrics are collected, validated, and processed. It is not just about having data; it is learning from what the data is telling us so we can make adjustments accordingly. You might be familiar with airplane travel between two cities. Pilots are in a constant state of changing and making course corrections because the aircraft is being pushed around by air flow, storms, etc. The pilots have gauges providing them with metrics such as location, speed, direction etc. so they can effectively navigate from one point to the next in the most effective and efficient way. The same is true for your organization. The plan is set and then data is captured along the path to give insights into course corrections to get the project accomplished in the best manner.
Preparing for best outcomes as we wrap up 2023 and planning for 2024, are the metrics and capture system in place and giving your team the best input to make the proper decisions which guide the organization to achieve its full potential? I recently listened to an audio book – “Atomic Habits” and one take away is that forming habits – good or bad are rooted in the systems which allow them to take place. If you have a habit of eating too much candy, the system likely provides ample amounts of it in close reach. The system is contributing to the habit you have in place. To redesign the habit, you must redesign the system which is underlying the habit. Remove the candy from easy access and change the habit.
Continuing our prep for a “Promise Culture” environment, this week take a look at the systems that allow for the best navigation to your final destination. Have the key control points identified, how you collect them, how you verify them and what course correction is needed. Next week we will investigate Action Systems.
Until then, give JKL Associates a call and set up a time to talk with a Promise Guide about building your “Promise Culture.” We are available at MI (313) 527-7945 or FL (407) 984-7246.
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