07
Apr
14

Understanding “Drivers” and “Outcomes”

4_Outcomes&8_DriversAt Strategies, every aspect of our business training and coaching is focused on what we call The Four Business Outcomes: productivity, profitability, staff retention and customer loyalty. Business success, and your success as a leader, is defined not only by the proficiency and mastery of each outcome, but by how equally you balance and synchronize The Four Business Outcomes. Think of each Outcome as one of the four powerful jet engines on a Boeing 747. Maximum efficiency and thrust to lift the 875,000 pound jetliner with over 500 passengers and cargo requires all four engines to be in sync. Should one engine underperform or fail, the performance and safety of the entire jetliner is compromised.

Outcomes are an end result. High productivity rates are an outcome. Impressive Balance Sheets and Profit & Loss Statements are outcomes. A unified and cohesive company culture with little employee turnover is an outcome. Fiercely loyal customers and high client retention rates are outcomes. In order to produce extraordinary outcomes, you’ve got to get the drivers right.

Drivers are catalysts – they make things happen. The right drivers produce the right outcomes. More importantly, the right combination of drivers working in unison produces the most consistent and impressive outcomes. At Strategies, we utilize what we call The BIG Eight Drivers:

  1. Culture: The collective behavior of the company that drives each outcome
  2. Sense of urgency: The energy that drives performance and growth
  3. Critical numbers: Numbers that, if changed, have a profound impact on the company
  4. Information flow: Top down, bottom up — everyone is on the same page and knows the score
  5. Teamwork: The unified energy of the company that gets the job done
  6. Innovation: Keep your thinking “outside the box”
  7. Systems: The procedures and structure to produce the right results
  8. Accountability: Delivering what is promised, when it is promised

Too many leaders and managers focus on achieving a particular outcome and completely bypass The BIG Eight Drivers. For example, if the outcome is to sell more retail, setting performance goals and simply telling your team to “sell more” sets everyone up for failure. However, if you apply each of The BIG Eight Drivers to a specific outcome, like “sell more retail,” the drivers are now in the proper sequence to deliver the highest degree of success to achieve the desired outcome.

Here are four no-compromise strategies to master drivers and outcomes:

  1. Establish clarity before hitting the launch button: Hitting the launch button on a half-baked idea or project is like flying that Boeing 747 without a flight plan or checking the fuel gauge. Achieving the desired outcome means working through each of The BIG Eight Drivers until you’ve delivered absolute clarity to everyone on your team. The extra time and attention on the details of the drivers will give you the highest probability of achieving your desired outcomes.
  2. “Same page” leadership: Getting everyone on the same page is a process at which no-compromise leaders work hard. In contrast, many leaders charge off into battle with no communication, leaving a confused, unprepared and disorganized team behind them. Getting everyone on the same page is the work of leadership. This is where communication and information flow drivers are at maximum output and remain so until the outcome is achieved.
  3. Breakthrough outcomes and the pain of change: I always emphasize that change rocks the boat. It has to. You want it to. Leaders love the term “stretch goals” … and stretching means getting uncomfortable and testing your limits. It hurts but feels good too. And all those incremental improvements ultimately deliver the outcomes you want. It’s what getting to that elusive next level is all about.
  4. No-Compromise Leadership delivers extraordinary results: I wrote extensively about The Four Business Outcomes and The BIG Eight Drivers in my award-winning book, No-Compromise Leadership. Mastering drivers and outcomes means overcoming your leadership blockages and understanding the dynamics of culture building and culture shifts. That’s the only way to align and synchronize The Four Business Outcomes and The BIG Eight Drivers. And when you achieve that … you’ll reap the rewards of achieving the extraordinary.

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Please share your thoughts with me about today’s Monday Morning Wake-Up. Click above to comment.

Pass this e-mail on to your business colleagues, managers and friends. They’ll appreciate it.

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