How many times have you walked out of a seminar or workshop all fired up, carrying a bag full of brochures and copies of the PowerPoint presentation the keynote speaker had just shared? The topic may have been an inspiring new marketing idea or a better way to improve production processes, etc. Whatever it was, the presenter had made it sound easy, exciting…doable.
Then you hurried off to the next workshop, where you heard more heart-pounding motivation that was sure to turn your company or department into a wonder. You couldn’t wait to get back home to put feet to those ideas and reap the rewards.
So, as soon as you arrived back in the office, you called a meeting to share all the new ideas with everyone. You put various staff members in charge of getting the ball rolling, to make it happen. Unfortunately, after a short while, you noticed these NEW IDEAS were getting pushed to the back burner.
You look back over your workshop notes...and somehow ideas don’t seem quite as exciting as when you left the meeting. You’re thinking, “Maybe it wasn’t such a good idea, after all!”
Or, MAY I SUGGEST—implementing good new ideas takes more than a little “Rah, rah!” and temporary stabs at application. It takes a commitment and some good-old-fashioned elbow grease!
A while back, one of our clients (I’ll call him Troy) called to tell me about a workshop he had just attended. The speaker—another business owner from his industry—had shared a unique, “proven” (he said) way of bringing in new business. As Troy had listened to the speaker, it occurred to him that 90 percent or more of the people attending the workshop would NEVER implement the speaker’s ideas, even though they were some of the most exciting ideas Troy had heard in a long time. Would Troy become one of the 90 percent?
Normally, Troy said, he would rush back home from one of these inspiring sessions and try, albeit haphazardly, to implement the ideas. But, now—since he had learned the real power of systems—he came at it from a different angle. He realized that implementing new processes, like planning anything of importance (a trip, an event, a major purchase, etc.), takes upfront planning.
OK, it’s a great new idea! So, HOW to implement it? What SYSTEMS did Troy already have in place that he might simply have to update to make this new idea a reality?
Troy told me exactly how he would make it happen: “I’ll begin by updating my marketing manager’s daily routine checklist
and several other key personnel’s daily routine checklists
.” He went on to explain what new prompts he would add or update on various quality
and service control checklists
He would take this new idea—and any future ideas that would benefit his company’s growth—and put them into action SYSTEMATICALLY. What Troy wanted me to see was that he really GETS it! Attaboy, Troy!
Seemingly simple ideas picked up at a convention, seminar, workshop, etc., have proven (yes, proven) not to be so easy to implement without a systemized plan
. Even a trip to the grocery store works better with a prepared and “stuck-to” checklist, so you don’t over- or under-purchase and end up wasting time and money.
Taking a new idea that seems right for your company and making it happen takes strategic planning, patience and implementation of written controls (checks and balances)! Good ideas and suggestions often get lost in the land of missed opportunities, while you’re chasing the next “great idea.”
In my book, “System Busters: How to Stop Them in Your Business,”
along with learning how to STOP old, bad habits, you can learn more about how to systematically START new projects and jump on those new ideas.
Did I mention? Great system work!