It’s that time of year; mid-summer about six weeks from Labor Day (all ready?!). Time to review what I’ve learned from our amazing clients and their triaging teams, as well as reflect on the work of our facilitators. I’m living that sometimes gleeful, sometimes nerve-racking challenge of growing this little company. It’s all about balancing a complicated and often competing list of to-do’s while making enough cash to on-board the best talent one can find to delegate stuff you must if you’re going to realize the vision. It’s a lot of the Happiness of Pursuit.
I’m privileged to be a Vistage® / TEC® speaker. My primary topic is Business Process Triaging. I was introduced and on-boarded to the Vistage® speaker community in 2013 by Kansas City chair Jeff Hutsell, a friend for life. Next year’s scheduling begins in September and is usually completed by mid-October. The national headquarters has a terrific team of speaker coordinators and asks speakers to organize their topic(s) around what matters most to their C-Suite members: The Key Decisions, The Big Idea, and Think Abouts.
My program targets executives of mid-size enterprises and department heads within large organizations where the service or product’s value chain is complex enough to require a team to perform. One reality in organizations this size is the core process (and the team living it) experience mass casualty events — times when the entire process comes under extreme stress. It appears to fail, or about to fail in almost every step, as if the entire process is under assault. Business Process Triaging is all about what leaders and teams do to get and sustain control of the environment. To find and focus on the best series of tasks and projects to navigate the growth they face.
THE BIG IDEA
Equip your Go-To Team* to handle Maximum Business Process Stress and build a more cohesive, situationally aware, emotionally smarter, business savvy organization while you’re at it. Business processes break as they grow, so make dealing with it a competitive cultural advantage. Be able to Business Process Triage when it’s needed.
* Go-To’s are your expert task performers and mentors, your believables when you need to know what’s really going. They’re your high-motor, high-passion, dedicated professionals.
THE BIG QUESTIONS & DECISIONS
Consider your core business process – from customer first touch all the way to service or product delivery to cash:
- You want a culture of continuous operational improvement driven by those closest to the work, that takes day-to-day issue management off your plate so you can focus on longer horizon, bigger decision stuff. What and how do you delegate?
- All hell has broken out across the whole process! Errors! Delays! Rework! What do you do that will settle everyone down right now? The result must put you on the best path to resolve things and prevent recurrence.
- You want to sell to a Private Equity investor. What might you demonstrate about your core process that makes you a compelling candidate?
- How might you raise your core team’s emotional IQ – that interpersonal empathy that glues highest performing teams together?
After an explanation and practical exercise in process triaging, and a review of a few case studies..
- Delegating issue processing in a business process to a team closest to the work.
- When it comes to core process issues, leverage the wisdom that the team has more situational awareness then the individual contributor.
- Insisting your Go-To’s also teach, not just do.
- Insisting on measurement-based issue processing while trusting your Go-To’s estimates.
- Considering the gap between your goals and your capabilities; the greater the gap, the more likely the process’s design will fail when you attempt to scale.
- There are times to deliberately sort (triage) before you solve – similar to a medical mass casualty event.
- Growing enterprises will be under constant core process stress. Embrace it. Design your culture for it. The triaging protocol is a proven skill.
- The program’s exhibits; just how much process intelligence can you gather from triaging?
- What is the opportunity value and cost of not having a Go-To team issue processing your core process right now?
So, my shingle’s out for next year’s speaking calendar. The three-hour talk, exercise, and case study review makes a solid executive staff half-day team builder.
Closing note: If you’re a C-Suiter and not a member of a peer advisory group, I encourage you to consider one like Vistage®. Reach out to me. It’s likely I know of a chair in your city. Email Rosey