"It is not the strongest of the species that survive, not the most intelligent, but the ones most responsive to change" - Charles Darwin
Whatever got you where you are today will not be sufficient to keep you there. A rapidly changing environment is the regular background against which organisations must develop.
Change is continuous and will become more rapid as we move forward over time. Senior management must be capable of reacting to those changes and be prepared to take advantage of them and yet stay within the overall framework and agreed strategy.
The role of strategy is fundamental if the people within an organisation are to be enabled to make the level of contribution of which they are capable. Strategy, based on a good grasp of the core competencies of a business, is an essential precursor to achieving optimal shareholder value.
The world's leading organisations continuously seek to improve their performance. There may be unlimited potential for achieving accelerated improvement but if this potential is not being realised, good change agents must line up and mobilise all the forces (or drivers) for improvement.
There are five main drivers for improvement in organisations:
• Lean operations
• Balanced culture
• Customer responsiveness
Strategy sets direction and give focus to improvement. It must however be deployed throughout the organisation to be effective.
Processes need to be mapped and analysed in a methodical way; projects must be managed; problem symptoms traced to root causes; data must be collected before decisions are taken; trends in customer preferences detached and fed back; improvement activity of any kind reported on and coordinated; improvement action measured. Just about everything should be done to a discipline.
A balanced culture means effective, creative management of people. Customers are served by people; processes are managed by people. Only people can deliver quality improvement. For them to work well they must be empowered, given direction, measured, reviewed and success recognised.
Customer responsiveness keeps the organisation focused on customer needs, reactions and changing requirements.
Finally, leadership ensures that everyone is enthused and supported to work on the strategy, improve processes, served customers and active team players.
Today's News: It is a while since I mentioned my good friend and publisher, Jeb Blount, who has created a superb sales community over at Sales Gravy - if you haven't discovered SG, do take a look here
Tomorrow: We are continuing our work on three exciting new projects, so the likliehood of some downtime is very slim, but hey-ho, that's the way of the world right now. You have a great w/e and be sure to make it back next week to join me and my guests. - JF
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