The title “Sustaining Greatness” arises from two observations I have had over the years working for and reading about firms aspiring to hold a leading position in their market.
First, companies held up as beacons of greatness in various forums seem to run out of steam or even crash & burn just as quickly as they rise to the top. Looking in retrospect at such cases, these firms just seem to lose their momentum. Some would postulate that luck plays a considerable role in business success, sometimes making us all look brilliant. But when studying these firms through the eyes of various authors, we come away with the impression that they were practicing solid principles that yielded superior results before they hit the wall. Besides, “luck” presents itself to every firm from time to time as opportunities. It is leadership prepared to move decisively to take advantage of these circumstances that is what results in success.
Second, most business writings address a rather narrow scope, focusing in on discrete functions or activities such as developing a great strategy or how to drive innovation. Despite an over abundance of actionable advice in these areas, surveys of leaders consistently report frustration and disappointment in the results.
What has struck me is the need to view all of a firms activities as interdependent, demanding a high degree of orchestration in order to deliver results that can move the needle. This orchestration has to happen both horizontally across all functions and vertically all the way down each organizational group. I refer to this critical practice as “connecting the dots”.
Every organization should be viewed as living organism. We know that the human brain builds, expands, and grooms circuits to process and act on inputs. We need to look at organizations in the same way. Connecting the Dots is all about building, expanding, and grooming the circuits of the firm to scale and improve activities that deliver results.
The posts on this blog will address the critical connections within and across the Planning, Execution, and Operation activities that I believe must be given constant care in order to repeatedly deliver meaningful performance.
A Product Management leader for three decades, driven by a vision anchored strategy, agile execution, operational excellence, and a relentless commitment to continuous development of a championship caliber team.