Change is continuous these days. The environment is changing, the market is changing, how work gets done is changing, our customers are changing, and so on. To be successful we must all make time to reflect on what we need to do differently to be successful in our new situation.
For years I have used a simple framework of START/STOP/MODIFY to help business leaders and their teams get specific about how they must adapt for future success. It is an essential practice for business leaders. Use this model for your own self-reflection, or lead a conversation using these questions with your team.
STOP - Make sure you begin with STOP first, most of us are over-committed. Unless we thoughtfully rethink what we are not going to do, we can't add anything new.
- What are we doing now that no longer adds value, is no longer necessary or effective?
- What are we doing that actually is derailing us from our objectives?
- What is stopping us from stopping? (habit, something outside our control, just need new thinking?)
- BRAINSTORM practices, actions or behaviors, eg: STOP having meetings without a clear agenda, STOP chasing prospects that are not qualified, STOP doing admin work that could be delegated, STOP breaking commitments to each other.
- What new actions or practices do we need to start?
- Have we had good ideas in the past that never were adopted as ongoing practices?
- What new practices can we invent that will help us add value to our customers?
- Consider the ROI of the new practices in terms of time, energy, money and value returned.
- Hone the list down to a vital few and commit to adopting them.
- What actions, practices, behaviors do we need to modify?
- What are we doing that works well... and what can we do to tweek the practice for higher performance or return?
- What best practices can we adopt from things that others are already doing?
- Where can technology help do something even more effectively?
- Where are there opportunities for process improvement?
These are the essential questions to ask. If you are doing it with your team, be sure to have a bit of conversation, allow for some individual reflection, and then come back to some commitments and document them. If you are doing it on your own, give yourself space for reflection, then find a colleague, coach, or a peer advisor to help your thinking and keep you accountable.
Of course, this exercise is useless unless you know where you are going and have defined a vision, objectives and strategies for yourself and your team - We can help you with that! Contact us today to learn more about leading change and creating high performance teams.