What's the name of your game? What business are you in?
Let's start with McDonald's. You might think that they're there for flipping burgers and selling $1 coffee. Think again. They hold the best real estate everywhere they go, all over the world.
If you're on-purpose organization is about saving the world, think again. There's no such thing as saving the world in general terms and hope that it sticks. The more precise you are about you're raison d'etre, the more power you have to bring your mission out into the world.
Focus on what you are built up to do, not what you are tempted to do.
Focus on external impacts for your main customers/clients. You exist to give value, no less than that proposition.
What differentiates with you from other organizations doing the same things are you values, ethics, and culture.
These three things permeate all throughout the organization, creating tremendous impact on your bottom lines and your impact achievement.
Name your game and be ultra-excellent in carrying out your mission, that no one can ignore you!
When everything is urgent, nothing is urgent.
When everything is a priority, nothing is a priority.
Change efforts go by the wayside if there's not enough urgency within the organization
to ensure that it will be given an undivided attention and resources it needs. Moving the strategic priorities into implementation requires consistent and constant pressure from management that understands strategic management.
85% of strategic plans do not get implemented. When the rubber hits the road, the tendency is to focus on the day-t0-day mundane issues, relegating the higher objectives into the backburner. This stop-and-go scenario will delay your progress and unconsciously reward inventing obstacles.
Managers and leaders- stop treating all crisis as equal. You should know how to treat priorities as real priorities, or your employees will not believe another memo with an urgent stamp.
It's not what they hear, it's what they see in action that gets believed.
In strategy, the conventional wisdom is to start from your current state/situation/position.
This is faulty and utterly difficult. Our status quo thinking and action propels us to look at what's in our current view. We rarely, in matters of management, look beyond, proactively because as Drucker said, we are constantly bogged down by "the tyranny of the mundane."
The leaders' and managers' job is not to solve problems but to look for opportunities. The future while fraught with uncertainty and high level of contradictions also provide a giant opportunity for innovation and applied creativity. Where to look is a good starting question.
We always look at the leading brands and organizations that are killing it even in the worst of times. But, their trajectories and strengths are different. They also have 'failure money' to experiment without risking their mortgages and future pension.
You have to start with your good practice. You have to start with backward thinking and then create the strategies linking the present situation to your desired states. Some call it the zero moment, when the future states are achieved in the present. Before you even reach this stage, you would be already on to your next-level challenge for your organization.
How much of your time these days is devoted to focusing on future prospects and opportunities, and how much time minding the daily business of keeping the lights on?
In times of crisis, calamity, and/or disaster, we turn to the people that we trust to get advice, feedback, or correct information.
The Internet and the public space have churned in enormous amount of the same information regurgitated in many forms and at various levels.
After the first few weeks of the pandemic, none of them is useful anymore.
The world had moved on and the people have coped well despite the initial fear and chaos.
We don't need a crystal ball or sooth sayers. We need independent thinkers.
Now, it is imperative to reimagine organizations that can progress past-COVID19, in a new dispensation that does not respect past records of success.
There are two types of organizations responding well to post-recovery:
One type of organization refuses to get behind the public path to recovery and have chosen to enact their own norms and policies that demonstrate clear strategic awareness of their organizational capabilities and understanding of the dynamics around them. They have made 'lemonades out of the lemons' and unafraid to keep on reinventing themselves to get the right challenge they need.
Another type of organization is preparing themselves to have multiple capabilities on various types of implementation and service delivery. At the granular level, it means that staff will be competent whatever the next 6 to 12 months will be. There is no more postponement or cancellation of programming, but all will be migrated to virtual delivery. The knee-jerk reaction is over.
Going above the noise of recovery is a challenge in itself. This means that leaders should have the clarity of intent and objectives with the latest information on what's allowable and not. The rest hinges on the boldness of their imagination.
The Gloomy Facts in Canada:
1M job losses in March.
2M job losses in April.
More facts to come as we learn more about the state of the economy in the new few months. This the new volatile world.
With these sordid facts, we can hypothesize the following scenarios:
Some businesses and organizations will not survive. This is a fact. Take the case of the Army & Navy.
Some businesses and organizations are still on stabilization and will do a 'wait-and-see" until this is completely over. This is a sad fact when they can start looking up. They are missing a lot of opportunities.
Some businesses and organizations in certain industries are making a killing. They are immune or some are more in demand in this time. What does it say about that-there are inequalities of impacts and unexpected opportunities for some! That is a fact too.
Some businesses and organizations are hell-bent on maximizing this new environment and are up re-rigging continuously until they find the right balance between what works now and what will work in the new future. This is the new fact.
Where are you in this spectrum?
Are you in the first, second, third, or fourth group?
Your current responses dictate your future. Your past successes do not translate to your future success.
Talk to me if you want to be in the fourth group.
Recently, the Alberta Government has released its Reopen Strategy to the public. One thing that did not surprise me is that, reopening is coming sooner that we thought.
Despite the fear and the trepidation felt by some quarters, businesses and institutions will have to reopen due to economic pressures brought by the lockdown. Easing slowly creates the activities we need to get our economy back on its feet or legs again.
Businesses identified to resume operations as early as May 4th will have to be, not just ready for slow but steady resumption of work, but also anticipate that this is a soft relaunch.
The following soft reopen can lead to further intelligence in terms of:
- modification of activities designed for new, emerging, and different demand from customers and clients
-sudden surge or slow demand or uptake for current services and programs
-continued communications to stakeholders about where you are in your transition
-preparation for eventual redeployment of staff-in-waiting or further laying off of unwanted labor
-new configuration of work, a blended approach to having both remote/online order/curb side and steady dine-in/personal in-person contact
- retooling of the business model to account for the new business order
-revisiting of the business strategy in view of these new realities
What are you thinking about right now that will help you get on with business-unusual faster than your competition? Doing a wait-and-see is a cop-out.
Let me help you now.