Growth Strata•Gems Magazine Growth Strata•Gems Magazine Spring 2018 - Page 9

“You can only grow your business as fast as you grow the skills of your employees, and a scalable operating system is key to sustaining growth.” 3. CREATE YOUR BIG HAIRY AUDACIOUS GOAL In the research that became their book Built to Last, Jim Collins and Jerry Porras discovered that the best companies had identified a goal that they developed and pursued over time, a goal so challenging that they did not know how they would accomplish it, but nonetheless, they were inspired to figure it out. The authors called this goal a “Big Hairy Audacious Goal,” or BHAG for short. an impact. Red Balloon decided that if 10 percent of Australians had received a Red Balloon day gifting experience, that would prove it. So they set their BHAG as providing two million gifting experiences at a time when they’d sold less than ten thousand experiences. With a large scoreboard in their office tracking experiences, they achieved their BHAG and are now resetting to a higher goal. 4. CREATE AND YOUR STRATEGY COMMUNICATE There is enormous power in creating a BHAG. A strong BHAG reaches out and grabs people, energising and focusing them. People “get it” right away. It takes little or no explanation. A classic example of a BHAG was John F. Kennedy’s challenge to the US people to “put a man on the moon and return him safely by the end of the decade (1960s)”. At the time, many thought it was an impossible goal, and the technical details hadn’t been worked out yet. However, it was a clear and powerful challenge that captured people’s imaginations. The goal was achieved. Strategy is a creative process, not a one-time event. In today’s business world, creating strategy is like building a bridge as you’re walking across it. It’s a dynamic process that follows a think/ plan/do/adjust cycle which continually uses market feedback to confirm the strategy’s success. So that you get a broad perspective and avoid group think, expand the planning team to include talented people beyond those on your executive team. This creates learning and development for them and leverages their deep understanding of the business which will improve the strategy. A great business example of the power of a BHAG is the Australian company Red Balloon. Red Balloon provides gifting experiences to people, and their core purpose is to change gifting forever in Australia by providing experiences rather than providing stuff. They wanted a measure to confirm they were having Secondly, you must continually revisit your strategy to ensure it’s working. My suggestion is to create a strategic thinking team who meet for one hour a week (think breakfast or lunch) to review changes in the marketplace, competition, technology, and the like. Don’t discuss day-to-day operations challenges; reserve this time Richard (Rick) Holbrook is a Trainer and Certified Coach with Gazelles International. He works with CEO’s to help them create an executable growth strategy that everyone in their company understands and is aligned with. Rick has worked with more than 70 companies in Western Canada since leaving the corporate world in 2004. for strategy. Then, every ninety days, revisit your strategy in a quarterly plan- and-review meeting. Strategy is essentially about placing the right big bets (and avoiding the wrong bets). Your team must learn what makes a great bet versus a merely good bet. Remember, a good strategy violently executed today is better than a perfect strategy next week. 5. EXECUTE YOUR PLANS All the previous four actions will be for naught if you don’t put in place a system to execute on the “important but not urgent” in your company. Strengthening your execution system will likely req uire you to streamline day-to-day tasks so you can create time for the important. You can accomplish this by putting in place an effective company-wide meeting framework that reduces meeting bloat. Once this framework is in place, you can improve execution by creating and transparently sharing priorities and by having teams hold each other accountable for completing their priorities and pitching in to help should someone start to fall behind. Also remember the 80/20 rule. Twenty percent of your efforts will give you 80 percent of your results, so ask yourself, what can you do to make that 20 percent more successful? To grow sustainably, you must be relentlessly focused on doing what you committed to do. u LEARN MORE AT: GROWTHSTRATAGEMS.COM 403-255-3613 SPRING 2018 | 9