A program on Strategy and execution in India

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Posted by Administrator | Posted in Uncategorized | Posted on 30-06-2010

Knowledge Capital hosted Verne Harnish – A leading strategy guru in India last week . Program garnered some rave reviews. Following is a summary of Key insights from Verne. This is a day-long program and I can hardly do justice to the 2 pages of notes and ideas.

1) Critical Number– What’s your daily question? What is the question you need to ask yourself/organization everyday for the next 90 days.  “We have the answers, all the answers; it’s the question we do not know!”  Don’t get trapped answering the wrong question.  When you get the question right, the answers appear.

2) Meeting Rhythm - start the daily huddle with your executive team as it was demonstrated and practiced in the workshop.  Use it to reinforce the daily question and improve communications.

3) No one has ever achieved peak performance without a coach — the battle of the coaches — Butch Harmon is Tiger’s early coach that helps propel him to #1. Tiger then fires his coach and goes it alone, resulting in his first loss of the money title in 2004 and two years without a single major’s win. Tiger then hires Hank Haney as his coach, gets back the money titles in 2005 and 2006, and wins nine of his last fourteen PGA tournaments. And he sits atop the FedEx Cup Challenge. Verne’s viewpoint — no one has ever achieved PEAK performance without a coach – so get one.

4) The three most important pages ever written for business leaders are pages 114 — 116 in Jim Collins’ landmark book Good to Great. It’s a bold statement, but Verne has seen the transformational impact on leaders and their growth companies when the concept on these pages is implemented. Unlike the standard executive or management team meeting that’s a weekly staple of most companies, this additional meeting is aimed solely at giving council to the CEO. It’s not about consensus building; it’s about generating “talk time” in an era when executives have been driven to silence by technology and left to solve problems via email. It’s about generating conversations around what’s vital to the success of the business and helping the executive team discover and face “the brutal facts” as Jim Collins so aptly describes in Good to Great. It was key to putting $160 million in Richard Kay’s (OTG Software CEO) pocket.

5) Cash flow: Gather your key executive team together for 30 – 60 minutes and brainstorm five ways you can immediately reduce your cash cycle and double your operating cash position within the next 12 months. Growth consumes cash – the first law of entrepreneurial gravity. Reduce your cash cycle days – PPR Travel changed the color of their invoice to blue and reduced their cash cycle days by 15.  Get customers to help fund your growth – Wild Birds Unlimited accomplished this through an innovative Free Birdseed Storage program.

6) The #1 capability of the brain? The answer is: Pattern Recognition. Our brains are uniquely wired to do this one thing brilliantly. Therefore, the key to mastering anything (and making great decisions fast) relies on you feeding your brain appropriate data and then letting it do its thing — find the patterns within the chaos!  At the heart of Dell’s and Walmart’s success is this fanatical focus on gathering customer feedback and acting on it WEEKLY.  Starting with the slips of paper Michael Dell had his employees use to log every problem, complaint, concern, issue, idea, or suggestion and then turn into him on Thursday’s so he could “read the tea leaves” each Thursday evening, Michael held a meeting every Friday morning to make Dell “1% better each week.” What are you doing to listen to your customers, listen to your market, gather intelligence weekly.   Daily meetings, daily metrics, and daily input from customers and employees — it’s all about feeding the brain more frequent data points so it can do its job brilliantly — recognize patterns before the competition, driving better decisions, and ultimately helping you win!

7) Review the Rockefeller Habits Checklist — like pilots pre-flighting their plane, We request you to take fifteen minutes with your team every quarter and see how many of the habits you now have in place from the list of 10 Rockefeller Habits — do this at your next weekly, monthly, or quarterly meeting. The key is just picking one or two to focus on in the next 90 days.