The Speed of Trust and the 3Cs

Good leaders surround themselves with good leaders.  Good teams submerge themselves in good practices.  Good people doing good action with good processes produce great results.   It works.  Great results flow. They don’t take onerous work. The people, the action, and the process make it happen.

So what does a great flow look like?  Trust builds on competency, chemistry, and character.  Trust greases the skids of great and right results.  Look for trust.  When it exists, the 3Cs are most likely in place.

There is one thing that is common to every individual, relationship, team, family, organization, nation, economy, and civilization throughout the world – one thing which, if removed, will destroy the most powerful government, the most successful business, the most thriving economy, the most influential leadership, the greatest friendship, the strongest character, the deepest love.  Stephen M.R. Covey on Trust

What does trust look like?

Loyalty:  When trust exists the backdoor bickering is silent.  Ever have a cohort who constantly bickers?  Character prevails. Loyalty extends in every direction.  A disloyal worker will bring strife into every decision.  Loyal people listen and learn and run with direction.

Rapid Results:  When trust exists people are busy doing the next thing.  The constant questioning goes away.  Vision is caught and integrated into daily action. Chemistry is activated.

Right Action:  When trust exists the team knows they can run and make mistakes.  They are responsible to keep each other informed and know what to do.  Competency is not a question.

Do The Hard Thing:

Team Building:  A manager asked me recently, “Phil, what do I do when these three seem out of sync constantly?  I have solid processes.  The people are trained.  Communication is constant.  Yet, we just can’t get the flow moving?”   Answer:  Look for the weakened link.  Somewhere, someone has lost vision or never had it.  They are not with the team.   Check out my series of TEAM articles on Shepherdok.net .  There are some tips on structure, action, accountability, adherence, and alliance.   Find the person out of sync.

  • If they are in a slump and have been faithful in the past, see if you can discover their angst and help them solve it. You can’t solve the issues of the soul.  You can provide the right environment to heal if it has been damaged.
  • Do not attack them. Many managers make this mistake and lose quality team members. Not only will you lose a friend and supporter, this is an act of treason on your part.  The rest of the team will sense your disloyalty to one member and you have become the joint out of sync.
  • If they have never shown faithfulness, release them to follow their heart. They are not with you and will destroy the rest of the team.  Let me be strong here.  If you have done your best and a team player resists, release them.  They will not become happy because you are a great person.  They will tear at the rest of the team’s joy and trust and productivity.  Release them and your team can go forward.  Their passion is elsewhere.  Help them get to it.  Be graceful and firm.

Stand strong. Build a great team.  Build a better organization forward.

Prepare Your Will

excerpted from Time To Lead: Steps To Transformation For Those and Those You Lead

timetoleadLeaders are able to reroute their path to meet core vision and objective.

Hezekiah was a God-Follower. It Changed His Life To Obedience

 II Kings 18: 5: He trusted in the LORD God of Israel; so that after him was none like him among all the kings of Judah, nor any that were before him.

Rest in this – it is His business to lead, command, impel, send, call or whatever you want to call it. It is your business to obey, follow, move, respond, or what have you. Jim Elliot

 Rule Well

Hopefully, we rule well. Our challenge is to address the issues of today that have been left unaddressed, too long. Our challenge is to set a powerful course that will reverse the manners in which we have become accustomed and find a course that will guide for decades. Our nation has lost moral compass and needs a strong thrust to establish a critical course for the future. It will be disastrous if we do not engage and adjust.

Principles Work

Leadership is leadership. Anyone can see results if they adhere to the principles. The more principles invoked, the greater the leadership. Yet, sometimes, it only takes one principle to fit with the timing of events and a great leader emerges. A leader empowered with the love and wisdom of God through Christ has a distinctive “accelerator” in results. God works with us doing miracles. (Mark 16)

Real Success

There are leaders entrenched in manipulation and avarice and greed. That is not where we need to look for example. Study them. Understand them. Avoid the fault lines. Men like Adolf Hitler and Josef Stalin need to be studied. Understanding why people followed such leaders is important, but not wisdom to emulate. People will follow base leadership that touches their prurient side. That does not make a successful leader or leave a better world.

 Worthy Goals

Earl Nightingale identified success as the progressive realization of a worthy goal. I like that definition. So my first test of greatness in leadership is a worthy goal. Is the goal one that builds other people? Is the goal one that adds to productivity? One U.S. company has the goal of producing the best “sin product”. Cigarettes, beer, snuff; anything that is damaging and addictive but legal for consumption is on their agenda. The greatest influence leader in that organization would not be considered successful in my estimation. There is no worthy goal in contributing to the destruction of human bodies and relationships.

Check The Core

If the core philosophy or goal or vision or mission is off center, scrap that example. Study those leaders and goals to understand the ways and wiles of mankind. Look for your own leadership example elsewhere. If you find your goals and methods following a leader with an unworthy goal, find a good closet for repentance, change your mindset, and get corrected. Some of the greatest leaders in history started with an unworthy focus, shifted, and become powerful in building communities. The ability to correct direction when it has gone awry is a quality of a great leader.

Pray with Faith: In the intensity of change, Lord, I look to You for guidance.  Mold my mind, will, and emotion to be Yours.

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Risk It!

Winners take risks.  They are unafraid of loss.  The balance of gains over losses motivates.

Psalm 20:6: Now I know that the LORD saves (brings out of trouble, restores, and strengthens) His anointed; He will hear him (and respond to his rallying call for help) from His holy heaven with the saving strength of His right hand (the hand of power and ability, the hand at which Jesus represents His). 7: Some trust in chariots, and some in horses (some trust in their riches and alliances and abilities and mental acuity): but we will remember the name of the LORD our God. 8: They (our enemies and all those who trust in their own strength) are brought down and fallen: but we are risen, and stand upright.

Winners are not afraid of losing.training

They are willing to take risks necessary to succeed in life.

Life means risk.  Life means taking chances that cause loss.  Loss of friends, loss of co-workers, loss of status, loss of power, loss of control, loss of understanding of those important to you, loss of money.. all these are losses a winner decides at times must be risked.  “No pain, no gain.  Know gain, know pain.”, some would say.  Life means risk.  Risk means loss.  Risk also means winning.

Edison risked until he found the right element for light bulbs.  Once on a comment that it took fifty thousand tries before he got results, he explained, “Results? Why I have gotten a lot of results.  I know fifty thousand things that won’t work.”

Ray Kroc became an outstanding business leader.  Yet, for years he failed at every business attempt.  It was so bad his wife was ready to leave him on his last venture.  Seems he sold out everything to buy a few hamburger joints owned by some brothers named McDonald.  You guessed it.  That was the start of the McDonald’s chain of restaurants that made the Krocs multi-millionaires.  Winners keep trying. (By the way, his wife stuck it out.)

Those secure in Jesus are unafraid of risk because they know He will back them up.  They know they can make a mistake and be put back on track.

Psalm 37:23: The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delights in his way. 24: Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down: for the LORD upholds him with his hand. 25: I have been young, and now am old; yet have I not seen the righteous forsaken, nor his seed begging bread. 26: He is ever merciful, and lends; and his seed is blessed.

Take Inventory

Pensive?

Trying to make a decision?

What is it?

Write it down.  Write down the good and bad about it.  Pray about it.  Listen to God.  Commit it to Him.  Decide.  Don’t let fear hold you down.

Make Application

Write what you are going to specifically do in the next 30 days about this.

 

Pray To Be Bold

Father, encourage me.  Strengthen me to take that step of faith in Your leading.  I am weak, Father.  I fail.  I am made of grass and wither in the noon sun, but You cause a shadow to cover me.  Let the cool breathe of Your Spirit blow over me and freshen my day.  Though I fall, I will get up and go again.  You will cause me to succeed.

Risk It! Stand Ground. Give Ground.

Pick your battles.  There is a time to stand and a time to give ground.  Use wisdom.  Move purposefully.

Phil:1:27: But whatever happens, make sure that your everyday life is worthy of the gospel of Christ.  So that whether I do come and see you, or merely hear about you from a distance, I may know that you are standing fast in a united spirit, battling with a single mind for the faith of the gospel and not caring two straws for your enemies. (J.B. Phillips translation).

A winner….. knows when to fight and when to compromise.

A loser ….. fights over the wrong things and compromises at the wrong time.

Hebrews 12:14  Let it be your ambition to live at peace with all men and to achieve holiness “without which no man shall see the Lord”  (J.B. Phillips translation)

Winners know when to fight to win and when to give.  In the song, “The Gambler”, the advice was given, “You got to know when to hold ’em, know when to fold ’em, know when to walk away, and know when to run.”  There is a fight worth fighting, and there are items in life not worth the effort.

Winston Churchill in the darkest hours of England’s battles with Germany had this sense.  When others wanted to lay down and give up he stood ground and challenged, “Never give up.  Never give up.  Never give up.”  The war was won over courage and tenacity and knowing the fight needed to be fought.

You have to know when to fight. After living in their new home for a year, the Newbies had a major problem.  Sewage came running over into the downstairs bath, living room, and entry foyer.  What a mess!  Massive cleanup, roto-rooter, and a few days of showering at the neighbors did not fix it.  The city claimed the problem was theirs, the plumber claimed the city needed to fix it.  Two great neighbors and a day of digging exposed a major city problem.  Out they came, and yes, they fixed it.  They dug 14 feet deep, repaired the sewer main, and replaced fences they had to tear down.  But, they didn’t take care of the carpet and house.  Forms, forms, and more forms, telephone calls, working with city attorneys, and a lot of prayer resulted in a surprise.  One night the local city councilman called to alert the Newbies that their reimbursement request was scheduled to get the hatchet the next day at the city council meeting.  P. Newbie showed up at the council meeting of this large metropolitan community.  Deep in the docket was a line item scratching the claim along with over 30 other homeowners.  What could he do?  Fight.  Fight for his wife to get carpet.  Fight for restoration.  Fight he did.  First in prayer, then in rhetoric.  “Mayor, my friends and I dug a 7 foot deep hole to show the city that the problem was theirs, I am willing to dig a 7 foot deep rhetorical hole to help the council see it needs to pay these costs.”  The council halted him right there and offered to pay a reasonable settlement.  No one else was awarded that day.  The clerk could not believe it when she issued the check.

You have to know when to give and compromise The budget battle was intense.  Hundreds of thousands of dollars in expansion monies were battled over by several departments.  Systems executives along with P. Newbie decided to withdraw and let the money go to retail remodels.  Eight months later accounting in an executive meeting moved $50,000.00 to systems and challenged them, “See what you can do with that.”  After 30 days of scramble and results, they gave them another $400,000.00 to spend moved from retail remodels

Take Inventory

Where do you need to fight?  Does someone need defending?

Where do you need to lay down your arms?  Is it better to give now and win a friend?

Make Application

Write what you are going to specifically do in the next 30 days about this.

Pray To Have Wisdom

Father, teach me.  Show me wisdom to count the costs of every battle and decide.  Help me to see when I need to simply serve by not fighting for my preferences.  Help me see when I need to rise and defend my family, pastor, employer, friends.  Enliven my heart to be a wise warrior with what is entrusted to me.

Risk It! Change

Every great innovation began with a resistence to status quo.  The greatest status quo that hinders is personal character.

Phil:4:8: Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. 9: Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you.

 

A winner …shows he is sorry by acting differently.training

A loser…. says, “I’m sorry”, but continues to do it again.

Philippians 4:13: I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

You would like to get victory over weaknesses, wouldn’t you?  That is what Jesus is all about.  In the book of the Revelation there are many promises to the one who overcomes, stays until the end, “takes a lickin’ and keeps on tickin”, keeps moving on.  Our weaknesses, insecurities, nuances of personality haunt us in the path of the winner.  Over and over we will make mistakes, glitch in performance, slip climbing the ladder, fall on our face, get egg on our face, boondoggle……sin.

Yes, one key word used for sin in the Bible is simply to miss the mark.  Shoot at a goal and miss it.  Decide we want to be loving and react with anger.  Decide to keep our minds pure then fill it with trashy books, magazines, and the boob tube.  Promise to a wife or son or daughter or friend or neighbor or coworker or employee or employer and then not follow through.  Sin.

The question is, “What do we do then?”  Do we take a winner’s stance or a loser’s escape.  Do we face up, fess up, and clean the mess up?  Or do we put on a face, say, “I’m sorry”, and fade away only to do it again and again?

Winners change.  Winners find a way to do life differently the next time.

Some years back a famous jewel thief was being interviewed over his life.  He had spent many years in prison.  His modus operandi was to only steal from the rich and famous.  The interviewer asked him what his biggest theft was.  His reply was, “Me.”  The explanation was simple.  He had stolen his own life.  What could have been a great creative mind used productively was used to steal and hurt.    When you refuse to change and use the talents and strengths God gives you, you are stealing from yourself.  Your time, energy, and talent go into actions that only produce hurt and pain for you and others.  Why not change to a better way?  Why not get a new thought process and quit doing what doesn’t work, what only hurts?

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us. Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfector of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.

Hebrews 12: 1-2  NIV.

Take Inventory

What needs changing in your thought life?

What can you fill your mind with that will cause the old thoughts to go out and new ones come in?

Make a date with destiny.  When are you going to start?

Make Application

Write what you are going to specifically do in the next 30 days about this.

 

 

 

 

 

Pray To Be Changeable

Father, quicken my mind and heart.  I make mistakes everyday.  Help me not repeat them.  Help me overcome the items in life that are so easy to do wrong.  Focus my thoughts on good things, pure, lovely, true, honest, excellent things that cause me to follow through with real change not just being sorry.

 

Common Grounds: Solving Workflow with Leadership

Quality is best managed by leadership.

The conversation with a commercial manager of multiple in-plants was revelatory. His responsibility covered a variety of situations of business and higher education where management had been sourced. Each instance had a mix of team members who were employees of the institution or business and team members working for the commercial sourcing group. Few of us ever have to work in such a complexity. One of the shops experiences continual quality issues. VisionWhat is promised and proofed sometimes does not match what is delivered in color consistency. Every shop has to solve this in their workflow. Yet, no shop can ever claim to have final resolution. Why?

Can quality be 100% managed by workflow? Policy and procedure and process never resolve every issue. It is the team member performing the task that must apply discretion and excellence. Machines glitch. Chemical mixes fail. Papers absorb and dissipate moisture. Files are changed two seconds before a run. People forget to communicate changes. All of these items impact workflow. The finest workflow fit to the greatest team and equipment and software and supplies does not accommodate for all variances or all combinations of variances.

Priority and pressure pre-empt. They do. An angry customer can fluster the best of press operators. A haggard executive can shift priorities on a job in process in order to take care of the urgent. When the job is restarted not all the conditions are the same. What was going to be on time is now threatened as a rush. Content may shift due to final edits and the customer overlooks the slight but critical impact on the final piece as they sign the proof and rush out the door at 4:30pm for a piece due the next morning. “Well you signed it!”, just does not please the customer after they have handed out the goof at their most important meeting of the month.

Quality is best managed by leadership. Some things are taught and some things are caught. Leadership is best taught by being caught. A production team will reflect the tenor and approach of the leader. If you’d like to have impeccable workflow then start with impeccable leadership. What you do in the shadows will be done in the light. How you handle decisions needing discretion will lead them when you are not there.

Proactive: Leadership looks beyond the specific request to the heart of the need. Instead of overlooking a mistake on a proof by a customer, a leader reviews with the customer and asks qualifying questions if something seems amiss. That is caught when a manager does an employee review or barters with a vendor or approves a request for time off. Do you give that example at all times? Then expect team members to apply during production.

Responsible: Leadership is ownership. A leader will listen to a dissatisfied customer, personally apologize whether involved in the job or not, and give a reliable expectation of correction. That is caught when a manager takes the heat for the mistake of another department with no bad remarks.

Supportive: Leadership undergirds in tough times. A leader will stay an extra few minutes to make sure the next shift fully understands the job in process. That is caught when a manager cheerfully goes over to help a customer stuff envelopes when last minute changes threaten a mailing.

Customer Best: Leadership cares. Care means I want the best for the other person. A leader will make sure all the pieces of an order are packed so no damage can happen in shipping.  That is caught when a manager opens the door for someone whose hands are full at the front door of the company.

Summary: Plant management is a 24/7 leadership opportunity. How you live in the hallways will flow over into your shop. Cutting corners with vendor contracts will come out in cutting corners among layout artists. No workflow quality check will replace quality leadership example.

ROI/ROECOMMON GROUNDS: These tidbits come out of daily consternations, comments, and concerns of real managers doing what you do.

 This article focuses on the operations and communications levels of the operational pyramid.

Let’s talk: Phil Larson or Shepherd Consulting OK

Renaissance Man – There is No Box

Danny DeVito starred in an acclaimed movie entitled, Renaissance Man.   He impacted others to believe outside the restrictions of present systems.  My junior year of university, Dean Musselman tagged me with that title.  As he reviewed my business, psychology, literature, religion, and sociology mix of courses, he both scratched his balding dome and complimented me for being broad in my quest for understanding.  Renaissance leads to revelation.  There is no box.

Wikipedia defines the Renaissance Man as “A polymath (Greek: πολυμαθής, polymathēs, “having learned much”), is a person whose expertise spans a significant number of different subject areas; such a person is known to draw on complex bodies of knowledge to solve specific problems”

renaissanceman

My personal form comes in taking a few keen skills honed over many iterations in business, community, and congregation and offer them to you.  Most of us in our journeys do not discover who we really can be until later in life.  Some find the path early.  Finding and early path to late discovery is a joy.

Excellence in operations and communications really shouts what I want to say to you.  Business, community, and home are fields of prosperity.  Leadership in community (business, government, education, non-profit), leadership in the people services (non-profit, congregation) and leadership in the home (fathers and families) build the environment in which healthy, dedicated, morally and emotionally and socially competent individuals and groups develop in balance and holistic health.

Contact me to assist in improving your business results.

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Contact me to assist in your family results:

Contact me to GET RESULTS.. 405.388.8037 cell/text

 

Manage Well: The 3 Questions

Bring a team into high productivity and positive morale with “The 3 Questions”.  Managers must master these.  Imbed them into your psyche.  Repeat them in your sleep.  Make them your meditational mantra.  Get it.

What is the down-line impact of this action?  How often do you have problems in production or sales or finance because of an inadequate exploration of this question?  What will happen in accounting if we promote this new product line at 5% markdown?  What will happen to other product lines?  Can marketing adjust in time for the sales season?  Will production be ready to handle sales volumes?

Put off this question at maximum risk of failure.  Even the simplest action in a sequence of workflow has to pursue an expanded understanding before change.  If we print this at a new size, will the finishing team be able to handle it?  If we promote a new advantage to our product will it meet compliance guidelines?  When we implement this change to our computer program for billing will it cause extra workload at 3am that affects another unrelated cycle?  There is no end to implications of one actions on other team action.  No one can know them all.  But you need to ask.

Who else needs to know?  How familiar is your team with the interaction of what they do with others?  Do you have workers living in a vacuum?  Have you taken time to educate them about interplay with other departments, people, teams, divisions, customers, and vendors?  When you change the usage of a machine, it might be wise to include the manufacturer in the discussion.  Ask often, “Who else needs to know?”

What is your information plan to include them?  When do they need to know?  Do they have access to enhanced information that might help you make a better decision before advancing?

Work with a production team with large dependency on delivery cycles proved out value here.  The delivery team was constantly a day behind.  They were only being informed at the time of pickup.  By moving the information to them at time of beginning of production, a day was cut out of delivery cycle to the customer and orders increased with increased customer satisfaction.  The sales team also needed to know at the same time instead of being informed only after delivery.  This enabled them to engage the customer along the path with pertinent and reliable information.  Who else needs to know?

What is the best use of my time right now?  After you ask the first two questions, answer this one.  Too often we ask this one and answer it only considering what we know and what we are doing.  We need to consider what others know and what they are doing.  A project launch could falter due to conflicting priorities in the organization.  A customer order may not be deliverable as requested due to a supply shortage and should be renegotiated.  After considering the plans and availabilities of others and related resources, we may want to work on an entirely different project or action and time this one in front of us into another day or week.

Summary Simplicity:   These 3 questions are priceless practice for any manager for self decisions and for training team members in their decisions.  After working with a team for a season on these, you will find they become masters of the top manager rule.  What is the top manager rule?  NO SURPRISES.  These questions eliminate the element of surprise and provide a foundation for a self managed team.

Ask them often.

What is the down-line impact of my action?

Who else needs to know?

What is the best use of my time right now?

Be Busy Building Better Business,

Phil

Phil@shepherdok.com

405.388.8037

Are you a PMO or a PCO?

Entitlement breeds discontent.  There really is no productive way to look at entitlement.  Don’t read this if you like entitlement organizations.  Don’t read this if you enjoy getting something for existing.

“The problem with socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.”  Margaret Thatcher

Business, NGO, and government must face the question.  Are a PMO or a PCO?

“You have to do your own growing no matter how tall your grandfather was.”  Abraham Lincoln

PMO – Poverty Maintenance Organization

PCO – Positive Change Organization

PMOs proliferate under social thrusts.  The easy part of being a charitable organization is asking people to give for compassionate repair and reparation and life needs.  Food, clothes, housing, and basics are all needed.  People will give to maintain a certain level of poverty in another’s life.  Poverty is the mentality that there is never enough resource and my efforts will never be rewarded adequately.  Poverty is a codependent focus instead of an interdependent cooperation.  Poverty is not an economic condition.  Lack of economic resource is a result of poverty mentality and living.  Societies and organizations that promote systemic adaptation to low rewards encourage economic, moral, and mental poverty.

PMOs proliferate under corporate mentality.  Oops, you thought this was about charities.  Any business that purses entitlement mentality of ‘get the minimum done to get paid and get benefits’ is as life force destructive as a charity giving out groceries to people who need growth.  Businesses that emphasize fun and frivolity and fairness and equality usually end up with a work force bent on work avoidance and entitlement expectation.  Those are all good things.  They need to be built alongside productivity and profitability.  After all business is about a fair return on investment.  Jobs happen when profits happen.

PMO is the way of life of the government.  Government consumes more and more of the community resource as laws get added and modified and bureaucracy grows and grows.  It is impossible for all the government entities to pay off the exorbitant early retirement programs that are inequitable and inconsistent with business productivity.  More and more cities, states, and nations have reached bankrupt points of no return.  PMO.

How do you become a PCO when you are a PMO?

Positive change organizations proliferate under reward and recognition.  Now, reward and recognition do not mean everyone gets the same dole or the longest tail gets the  biggest piece of the pie.  In a PCO, reward comes in relation to present contribution not position or power or political expertise.

In parenting theory we call that love and logic.  Raising children in a positive environment keys on establishing positive and negative consequences for behavior.  Reinforce that environment consistently and a productive citizen is formed.  Oh, that is also a great system for correction systems and addiction recovery.  Entitlement is an addiction.  I used to believe nicotine was the hardest addiction to break.  Entitlement is tougher.

So how do you change from PMO to PCO.  This little graphic maps the path.

entitlementtoconsequenceDocument the state of entitlement.  Confront the facts.  Identify where behavioral consequences are missing.  Quantify the cost to your organization of death by indecision. Decide which battles you are willing to fight.  Any reversal of entitlement will be met with violent resistance and revolt.  Better to build with encouragement and consequence systems, but PMO happens.  So be real and be honest.

Communicate change repetitively to those involved.  Give plenty of lead time to the change but not so much that griping and groaning have time to build barriers.  That is a fine balance.

Start rewarding productive behaviors before removing entitlement doles.  This won’t change anything, but it will establish a new thought pattern in those affected.  It might have been so long since they had positive reward for productivity that they have forgotten what dignity feels like.  Entitlement strips dignity and inner drive.  Dignity based on reality has to be instilled fresh.

Move to consequence and positive reward.  You might find this difficult.  Your management team may have no idea how to identify positive and productive behavior.  They are used to promoting entitlement and systemized to zombie workplace.  Dilbert might be their favorite cartoon for a reason.  Of course, as the executive leader admit your guilt in leadership.  You will have to change, too.  The greatest failures of organizations wanting to make this move is that top leadership credits the workforce for being more powerful than the executives and blames them instead of the mirror.  Truthfully, it takes combined efforts of management and work team to enter entitlement and to exit entitlement.

Measure Shock and Fear.  This will be large.  Get ready.  Get poised.  Backbiting, blaming, and bickering will explode.  But it will pass if you hold ground.  Keep focus on where you are going, encourage the afflicted, and do not let this stop you.  If you stop here, you will find it doubly difficult to work on this in the future.  Many companies sell out at this point and leave the issues for the new owner.  They may scuttle great managers and executives as sacrifices to the masses.  Don’t doubt in the dark what you know in the light.  Keep moving forward.  Plan to run.  Run the plan.

Productive Behavior and Growth.  Here is where you land.  Here is where you focus.  Here is where you want to be.  The Positive Change Organization promotes, inspires, and realizes productive behavior and growth.  Not everyone can exist in this environment.  Yes, you may lose some people you had believed to be key.  Not everyone wants to change.  Try to salvage them, but don’t sink productivity in the process.  New leaders will rise.  They’ve been poised for this new environment and potential was shadowed in the old system.  Now you can see them.

PMO or PCO?  You decide every day with every decision what environment you wish to build.

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Change is Never Straight

Controlled chaos is a normative term in the management of change.  Change is never straight.  Change defies a linear constraint.  Change is messy and change is curved.   Leaders must be curved people.

Mentoring a growth team, we reviewed normal impact of change on the growth leader.  In this model vision leads to planning and implementation leads to problems and pressures leads to perseverance leads to accomplishment and success leads to celebration and rejoicing leads to increased vision.  Or you can choose crisis instead of perseverance which leads to exhaustion and withdrawal can lead to restoration can lead to increased vision.  Or crisis can abort the progress.  There are hundreds of divergent paths that may happen.  Change is messy and curves a lot.

Change is not for straight line people.  They are good at regular performance and processes.  Change bothers them.  A leader must learn to be a curved person.  Change is inevitable and needed. Leaders lead through the curves.

There is one major curve in change you should explore and master.  It is the curve between your starting level of productivity and your landing level of productivity.  In that curve lies all the potential for disaster and triumph.  In that curve many leaders lose sight of vision.  In that curve success is assured and failure is certain.  Master the curve and master change.

Starting Level: Preceding productivity curve is your present level of productivity and accomplishment.  How successful are you?  What are your measurements?  Know them and get them recorded. changecurve

Plan: Now, plan the change that you intend to take your business or other endeavor into the next level of productivity.  Go from 100 widgets a day to 200 widgets a day.  Add a new product line while keeping current production levels on others.  Penetrate a new market.  Implement improvement in service.  Change for growth.

 Launch: Launch the change.  Communicate, take action, and plunge into the change.  Paralysis by analysis is deadly.  There is a moment and point of demarcation.  Take it.  Fall off the mountain.  That’s right fall off the mountain of your current productivity level.

Freefall:  Change causes freefall.  Problems come from change. Teams get confused.  Productivity decreases while people absorb new information.  The right screw becomes the wrong screw.  Questions abound.  Production plummets.  This was in your plan, right?  You made allowance for this, correct?  No?  Whoops.  Fingers get pointed.  Doubt crawls up the ladder to challenge the change rationale.

Adjust:  Light shines.  People push through learning curves.  The services straighten out on the planned track.  There is smiling in the camp instead of groaning.  You knew you would get here, you just wished it had happened on schedule and without the problems.  The changes begin to push productivity above your starting level.

Landing Level:  Why endure the pain of change?  Reach new levels.  Plan diligently.  Execute well.  Adapt strong.  Obtain outcomes.  Receive reward.  Of course, it does not always look so pretty.  You might drag onto the landing level scarred and scattered.

Summary:  This conversation is one I’ve had with hundreds of learning leaders.  Every new leader expects smooth change, gets into the curve, panics, and needs some encouragement.  Have your eyes open when you enter the change curve.  You still might get blindsided, but you will be ready.  Adapt with good and frequent communication and intentional feedback points.   Go ahead and fall off the mountain.  The landing spot is higher than where you stand.