A bit like an engine, your business output, its productivity, is dependent on the performance of the component parts of the company.
As a business leader, you strive to employ the very best, use the best methods and processes and fine tune the teams for optimal output.
However, just like an engine, tuning parts of it doesn’t necessarily lead to greater performance.
In the hands of a specialist, it is understood that an engine doesn’t rely on individual components being the very best, but rather the inter-relationship between them that turns an engine from good to world class.
To achieve this in business terms, you need a structure that supports joined up working, but also the ability for teams to shift and compensate between themselves when the inevitable “change” happens, be that changes in customer needs, regulatory requirements, financial changes, or quality.
The pitfall in trying to achieve this, the sand-bunker in your way, is called GroupThink
This occurs when teams of people become fixated on group agreement, instead of the right choices. It can stifle innovation, replicate mistakes time and again, and cause loss of performance, flexibility and output.
Change, is of course a daily business constant, not a single event. It causes businesses to fail, who are not prepared or flexible enough to respond to shifts in customer needs. It stifles profit and performance, as teams struggle to keep up, and is often viewed psychologically as a negative thing for individuals.
Returning to our engine, a system that has to respond to constant conditions of change, we know that tuning it for higher performance, means that strengthening of individual components is often needed.
Cams and bearings need upgrading to cope with the additional power, otherwise the stress will cause breakage or excessive wear.
Translate that back to your company, and this leads to consider the strength of your management team, the focus of the board, and the capacity of your teams to grow and adapt to change
As technology evolves at eye watering pace, customers demand greater service for same or less cost, competition increases, product innovation occurs, or legal requirements increase resource overhead, you may be forgiven for rolling your eyes and wondering how to deal with a complex inter-relational problem
Head in the sand is not a viable option, as profit erosion, performance decline and loss of your best staff will surely follow.
The good news is that Team Action Management (TAM) exists for this very purpose.
Used by many companies very large to very small, this is a framework for managing constant change. Indeed, you will find it published in a book called Leading Constant Change (Author: Philip Webb)
Used primarily to drive performance, deal with complexity in a reassuring simple way, and be under the calm control of the business leader, always.
It operates across the entire business to create optimised performance, protecting the business profit, supporting innovation, and is repeatable at will by the business leaders at any time
Tuning your business isn’t really an option, it is a survival policy.
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