All posts tagged: Radical Accountsbility

Squirrel Moments

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My black lab, Kingsley, is like many of his breed in that he has Squirrel Moments. He’ll be doing one thing, and then a squirrel runs across the top of the fence. Seeing this out of the corner of his eye, Kingsley runs for all he is worth, convinced that this he’ll actually catch the critter. But, alas, the squirrel is always faster and craftier, and Kingsley is left to glare and bark his fiercest of barks. Once the squirrel is out of sight, Kingsley rarely returns to what he was doing before, no matter how interesting it may have been. The distraction, the Squirrel Moment, disrupted his memory and momentum.

While humans are much, much smarter than my goofy, yet lovable lab, we too have our Squirrel Moments. Even when we’re engaged in the most important of projects or tasks, something else, our “squirrels,” grabs our attention. It could be a call that would have been better to have let go to voicemail, the co-worker whose interruption could have waited, or that email chime or alert that ends up being a message that was much less important than the task at hand. Once we lose focus, we lose momentum. Work takes longer, and quality often suffers.

Multitasking is a myth, as we are incapable of effectively doing more than one thing at a time. Some may dismiss this, but take a moment to observe someone who claims to be multitasking. Watch long enough, and you’ll see that the individual may move from one thing to another every few seconds, but at no point in time is he or she really effectively doing multiple things at once.

The solution for Squirrel Moments simply requires better habits, including:

  • Singletasking, a dedicated focus on the task at hand.
  • Maintaining boundaries to minimize distractions that are almost always less important than the task at hand.
  • Avoiding drive-by leadership and, instead, meeting with employees once or twice daily to disseminate important information.

Squirrels are referred to as pests for a reason. Sure they’re cute, but they can be awfully destructive, burrowing into places where they cause distraction and even harm. Better that we leave the squirrels to the Kingsley’s of the world so we can stay focused on the real work that brings home his dinner.

Learn more about Sales Yoga: A Transformational Practice for Opening Doors and Closing Deals

Scott WintripSquirrel Moments
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Simple is Sustainable While Complex Makes Goals Unattainable

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Wintrip Consulting Group : Take No PrisonersTake No Prisoners is a free weekly memo from Scott Wintrip that explores how Radical Accountability prospers companies and changes lives. Instead of taking people hostage with outdated, heavy-handed, and ineffective methods of management, measurement, and motivation, Radical Accountability focuses on creating an unwavering responsibility for getting what matters most done.

Driving to work, I once again saw a bumper sticker that I’ve seen before: Stuff Happens. Well, so does accountability. Accountability is happening in every organization, and the results achieved tell us just how effective it is. Good results, such as consistent growth, sustained or improving profits, or incrementally increasing market share can be traced back to moderate to highly effective accountability. Poor results are always rooted in a system of accountability that contains flaws.

One common thread in compromised accountability systems is complexity. The more complex the system, the more likely it will fail.

Below is a process for creating Simply Effective processes for improved responsibility. By following this path in creating or improving the accountabilities in your organization, you’ll develop or revise your methods, providing your team with a more viable way to succeed.

This Week’s Radical Accountability Activating Action: Use this process to revise accountabilities that aren’t working or to devise accountabilities that are missing in your company.

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Scott WintripSimple is Sustainable While Complex Makes Goals Unattainable
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Navigating Through the Business Fog

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Looking out at Lake Superior from the North Shore of Minnesota this past weekend, we consistently saw one thing throughout the day — fog. At some points, as we journeyed up the coast, we could see just a dozen or so yards in front of us, necessitating headlights, taking corners with more care, and staying vigilant and completely present to our surroundings. At Split Rock Lighthouse, we saw how this beacon and its foghorns helped captains navigate their vessels out of harm’s way. Without the lighthouse keepers, who kept things in working order, countless lives and property would have been lost.

Companies experience their own fog including market uncertainty, shifts in customer attitudes, competitive pressures, changes in buyer needs, and unanticipated problems. Managers, being the keepers of the corporate lighthouse, must diligently keep all of the navigational equipment in good working order.

A focus on acquiring the right business with good customers is achieved only if the light beam of corporate identity is constantly shined in the proper direction. Thorough communication to people throughout the company only happens if foghorn devices, like dialogues, documentation, meetings, and emails, are used in effective and efficient ways. Adequate fuel to power the business and its lighthouse, in the form of the right employees doing quality work, requires that managers are always looking ahead, hiring ahead, and staying ahead. All of this depends on equipment, like phones and computers, being in good working order since, without that, the company could suddenly find itself in the dark, unable to navigate its way past the dangers and challenges ahead.

This is why maintaining Radical Accountability, an unwavering responsibility for getting done what matters most, is the most important function of a leader.

Fog happens, but it doesn’t have to ruin your day or worse, sink your ship. Leaders who keep shining the light of Radical Accountability ensure that their company and its people circumnavigate through every opportunity and obstacle.

Scott WintripNavigating Through the Business Fog
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