Levels, Roles, and Leadership Throughout

Something I’ve been chewing on recently is the notion that hierarchy and titles are antiquated concepts, especially for organizations looking to keep pace in (as Thomas L. Friedman has termed it) the age of accelerations. From my perspective, structuring a work force according to a hierarchy impedes the movement of people. A hierarchy implies that you work in one area for someone on certain things and need to take a new job in a different area for someone else to work on other things. When it comes to title, they tend to be narrow or skill-oriented (like “project manager, “customer service…

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The result in front of us

One of my leaders shared what a former leader of his told him: if you’re happy with the result in front of you, then it must be the one you’re willing to accept. This statement cuts right through all the bluster and BS we tell ourselves as to why something didn’t land or turn out. You know the truth when you look in the mirror and ask, in your heart of hearts, if this is your best. Those who are always striving for better will know it’s time to head back to work; the rest will shrug and move on….

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What’s one day?

At one point or another, someone (a person, a team, or an organization) has done something that’s diminished the trust you have in them. I’ll use an example of funding a mortgage where, from the outside, it seems straightforward: transfer money from the financial institution’s account to the lawyer’s account on this day and time so the customer can take the first step into their new home. Ask around and, no matter who a person banks with, these organizations have missed on hitting the date. Another example is you’ve ordered something and been promised delivery the day before you’re leaving…

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Do more by narrowing your focus

A meeting once a week (with no end in sight) to make improvements will result in two things: 1. No timely progress. 2. Frustration and annoyance by people who are in the habit of getting shit done. Instead of having 20 things on the go at the same time – each with their one hour weekly meeting – let’s focus on 2 or 3 in a month and drive them out to release or completion. Then onto the next iteration or the next thing. Clear your calendar for a day or a week, get in a room, and get it…

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Declaring “work” dead

It’s time to list out everything we’ve got on our plates and declare a bunch of “work” dead. A possible litmus test: the project or initiative has stalled, doesn’t deliver on our strategy, fails to create value for customers, or does little to enhance the team member experience. If any (or heaven forbid all of those) criteria are met, declare it dead and over. Tell the sponsor or person who asked you to do the work that it’s dead. If they want to start it back up in the future and brings resources, great. Until then, there are a tonne…

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