What happens when you stumble?
Enjoy this sneak peek from chapter 10 of Be More Strategic in Business, and don't forget to pre-order your copy so you have it in your hands on August 15th!
If you’re going to be a leader, you’re going to make mistakes. Because you’re evaluating what you’re doing, your mistakes are going to be highlighted, sometimes in a very public way. The worst thing you can do is to ignore them. Sometimes you execute perfectly, but you don’t impact the metrics you thought you would, and you still don’t meet the goal. Ask yourself:
- Was the original impact theory which comprised your Impact Blueprint wrong?
- Did you impact an unexpected goal?
- Do you need to change something in the way you executed?
In order to win, you absolutely have to be self-aware. How can you improve and keep doing better? Poor outcomes don’t automatically mean you’re not winning; they indicate a need to step back down your ladder, figure out what happened, learn how to do better, and get back up to the top. The way you lose is by ignoring or attempting to hide the poor outcomes. Also, remember the third rung of your ladder. By engaging your stakeholders and creating a shared culture of accountability, you’re all in this together. You all misjudged, and you all have to take steps to fix it. You are the ultimate accountable leader, so galvanize your troops and make the necessary changes. More often than not, if you’ve built your ladder with authentic rungs, then your missteps can be repaired with tweaks. If a major overhaul is required, it’s usually the result of some radical shift in the outside world that you didn’t—or couldn’t—anticipate. Reserve the right to get smarter as new information comes to you.
Do you know why we chose a ladder as the overarching metaphor for this book? You build your ladder, you climb up it, and you think you’ve arrived. You’re at the top of the jungle, looking out over the trees and seeing the big picture. Congratulations. Now you have to figure out how to stay up there. Ladders wobble, the ground can shift, and the tree your ladder is leaning against can collapse. And don’t forget—trees grow! As your organization or department grows, you will continually need to reevaluate your big picture. Is everyone still aligned to the vision and mission?