By | Prabodh Sirur | In search of Postitive Intranets at In search of Positive Intranets
A friend of mine sent me this book called Deep Work by Cal Newport.
I decided yesterday that I must allocate my full attention to do a Deep Read of the book for the sake of my well-wisher. At around midnight I read a chapter on The 4 Disciplines of Execution. This chapter was about improving your execution skills. It detailed the four musts to ensure a successful execution.
The topic was at the top of my mind. During my morning walk, today, I was constantly thinking about it. Suddenly I remembered two of my ex-colleagues Harry Madan and Nimod. It struck to me that they were an example of a new execution discipline; let me call it the 5th Discipline of Execution – ‘Just do it.’
Let me share with you their stories. These stories are not exactly earth shattering but two examples of how some people have a talent to pick things up and run with it. I think my friends Harry and Nimod have a talent to convert an action into habit. Maybe that’s how they are able to maintain the regime.
Harry Madan is the Head of Accounts Support team in one of our manufacturing units. His team’s job is tiring and frustrating because they are a conduit between the Production Team and the Clients. You can imagine their pressure. The Production Team wants more time to give a quality delivery; on the other side the Client wants it NOW. Harry Madan’s team needs to have great skills to manage both their Clients (internal and external) and an ability to maintain emotional balance.
We had planned a workshop for the client support members from all our units. That’s when I met Harry. During my discussion with him about handling the work-pressure, I suggested to him, “Why don’t you start your day with meditation?”
To my surprise, Harry actioned on my suggestion immediately. He enrolled one of his young team members for a meditation class. The team started off as soon as the guy completed the short meditation course.
The team starts their work-day with meditation; with the sole objective of keeping themselves in the right frame of mind throughout the day so that they can serve their Production Team and their Clients with a great attitude.
All this started a couple of years ago. The regime continues till date.
Harry never asked me –
Has this been done before?
What is the ROI?
What if there are calls during our meditation sessions? Who is responsible for it?
Harry just went ahead and implemented my one line suggestion. He didn’t even come to me to tell me that he implemented it. Great example of Just Do It.
Nimod, a great manager, manages our digital publishing team. He would drop by once in a while to ask questions and learn from our experiences. In one of our meetings I told him about my experience of working with the world famous Seattle Fishmongers, famous for converting their fish stall into an extra-ordinary workplace. He thanked me and went off.
After a few days he invited me to his office. I was to reach his office at exactly 10am. I was curious. What I found was amazing. His team had gathered in a meeting room. They started their meeting at 10AM sharp by reciting, in chorus, our company’s vision statement. Thereafter one member got up to tell a short inspirational story that explained one of the values of our company. The whole exercise was over in ten minutes after which the team members dispersed to start their day-job. I attended these team meetings at ten o’clock frequently. Some of Nimod’s team members were not fluent in English so they shared stories in Kannada, the local language. What was evident to me was that each member knew our vision statement by heart and each one had clarity about our company values. It was a rare experience for me.
Like Harry, Nimod also didn’t ask me the advantages of conducting such bizarre meetings.
Nor did he ask me, what is in for him. These meetings are going on for the past two years.
I asked a few of Nimod’s team members about the benefits of these meetings. One of them said, it brought in discipline because everyone had to reach office on time, a young girl said she is no more afraid to speak in front of the crowd, the third member said, he had developed a habit of reading stories because each one has to be ready with stories to be shared in these meetings, the fourth one said that the values of the company are at the top of his mindwhenever he is doing any task. Nimod had created an energised team just by this ten minutes morning ritual.
Nimod for me is an example of JUST DO IT way of execution.
Thank you Harry and Nimod for educating me by your 5th Discipline of execution.
Dear friends, hope you liked my sharing. Do you belong to the tribe of Harry and Nimod? If yes, please share your story. If no, give it a try for JUST DO IT.
Summary of what I read as part of writing this article:
These four disciplines help organisations to translate strategy into actions. Disciple 1 – Disciple of focus; focusing on the most critical goals, Discipline 2 – Defines lead measures for the task and not the lag measures; lead measures help change the behaviour, Discipline 3 – Keeping a compelling scoreboard, Discipline 4 – Reviewing progress regularly
Four minute video on “How to drive the execution discipline in your organization?“
Strategies fail NOT because they are bad but because they are poorly executed; Business schools teach 90% strategy and 10% execution; Culture executes strategy; 85% employees do not know their company’s top three goals; 87% do not know what they should do to achieve the goals; execution demands behavioural change.