Jim Collins, in the classic book Good To Great explained that one key to becoming a great company was being able to maintain both discipline and entrepreneurship, or innovation as you grow. Of course, this is easy to say but I could speak for a whole day on what it really means and the organizational, political and individual forces that usually prevent it. These two characteristics are often opposite personalitiy types, and often mutually exclusive in individuals. Think “anal retentive and obcessive compulsive” versus a “Creative, free spirit”. We all know both types and there is a spectrum. However, both must co-exist in a company for it to become highly successful.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words and so this image attempts to convey the “Discipline” idea at a high level. This is a process (discipline) that every company needs to use to solve almost every major problem that goes across departmental, or authority, lines. It can drive effective and sustainable organizational change when used properly.
We have many documents and videos that elaborate on this principle and process. This is actually the process AirTight Management uses for all its engagements to install each of its Six Systems. Only with the proper balance of consulting, training and coaching can a big change take hold and succeed. Without this mix laziness, habits and years of reflexes will pull the organization back to the older, inferior, ways in time.
This is also the cycle and process every company should use each time it encounters a major problem that goes across departmental lines to create any permanent change. In working with over 200 companies since 2002 we have found that generally training alone fails. Consulting alone fails. And even coaching fails to change a culture, or company, in significant ways. Coaching alone can be successful at changing an individual’s behavior and performance. However, Organizational Change and Development requires discipline, creativity and analytical skills to take hold. Success also requires fresh eyes to look at problems that are often just symptoms of root causes that are three or four levels away. Maybe even started in another area of the business.
So ask yourself, and your team as we begin 2016: “Are we dedicated to having discipline and working “on” the business, not just “in” the business this year? The first step is having a plan. The next is a disciplined cycle of review and constant improvement driven by a good management team.
We wish you a successful new year and can help you solve almost any business problem and increase your growth rate. Call (619) SCALE06 for a free assessment.