Archive for Operational Management

Sustainability Reminders

This month’s topic has been that building sustainability is a building block of operational effectiveness. We have talked about sustainability in the past and here are a few reminders, as discussed in previous newsletters, on what is needed to build sustainability within your company:

  • Establishing sustainability requires discipline and focus. This can be accomplished by using Aldridge Kerr’s proprietary methodology: Doable, Chewable Chunks®.
  • Becoming consistent in the methods in which you do business will support a sustainable organization.
  • Consistency leads to building repeatable processes. When tasks become repeatable, your organization is in a better position to sustain itself.

These reminders, as well as others on our newsletter page, reinforce the importance of building sustainability within your organization.
Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you.

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If you prefer a do-it-yourself approach, check out My COO Resources.

Sustainability Intentionally

One of the Aldridge Kerr Team commented that most folks (and organizations) do not intentionally allow for inefficiencies or ineffectiveness. This is true. But, the reverse is also true: in order for any organization to build a strong, sustainability operation, they must be intentional. Building sustainability is a must for operational effectiveness.

Here are some hints for being intentional around sustainability:

  • Know your strengths as well as your areas of opportunity for change
  • Define what will create massive change most quickly – it is often a “quick fix” that can be monumental
  • Realize that sustainability requires an ongoing effort of continuous improvement
  • Be open to new and different ideas; change can be good

Need help? Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you.

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If you prefer a do-it-yourself approach, check out My COO Resources.

Sustainability and Staff

In our most recent newsletter, we discussed sustainability and its role as a building block to operational effectiveness. A key characteristic of sustainability is engaging your Staff.

Often as Aldridge Kerr works with our Clients, Management will be impressed with one of our recommendations. This is when we explain to them that the brilliant idea was not ours but someone on their Staff. We find frequently that our Staff has great ideas on how to improve (and sustain) the organization. But Management fails to ask them.

We encourage Management to tap into the wealth of knowledge front-line Staff has on methods to improve how they do business. This leads to an engaged Staff as well as encouraging sustainability.

Not sure how to best tap into the input from Staff? Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you.

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Measuring Success

Here comes the hardest part. Now that you have defined where you are going and the path to get you there, establishing the measurements for determining whether or not you are successful is needed.

Here are some hints:

  • Be realistic: Creating unachievable results set you up for failure.
  • Be as specific (quantitative) as possible: Vague measurements are almost impossible to achieve.
  • Be consistent: Align your measurements with what you really want to achieve.

By measuring where you are going, the path to get you there, and the methods that you will use to achieve it, you will know how to achieve your objectives.

Can we help? Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you in improving how you do what you do.

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If you prefer a do-it-yourself approach, check out My COO Resources.

The Path to Get There

In our last blog, we discussed the need to clearly define what you want your Company to achieve. By doing so, you will have begun to identify your objective for success.

Next, identifying the path to achieve that goal is needed. For example, if you want to launch a new product line or service, consider:

  • What is being launched?
  • What is required to launch it, including but not limited to people, processes, tools/resources, timeframe, etc.?
  • What are the obstacles to achieving this?
  • What will work – and will not work?
  • What will it look like when it is successfully launched?

By considering the path that must be taken to launch, you are beginning to more clearly define the measurements you will need to achieve your desired results.

As with any initiative, project, or objective, understanding the path to get there is critical. Need help? Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you.

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If you prefer a do-it-yourself approach, check out My COO Resources.

Measuring Where You Are Going

In our most recent newsletter, we identified that defining methods for measuring success is another building block of operational effectiveness.

A logical starting point in measuring success is having clarity on what you want to accomplish. This can be measured in a variety of methods, based on what you want to achieve:

  • Defined revenue growth by percentage or dollar amount
  • Execution of a new or enhanced product or service
  • Implementation of a project or initiative
  • Meeting or exceeding a deadline

By defining: “we as a Company want to … (complete the sentence),” you have taken the first step in measuring success.

As a Business Leader, take a moment to consider what you would like to accomplish by the end of the fourth quarter. Then look for our blogs over the next few weeks as we help you to more clearly define how to establish a measurement criterion to achieve it.

Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you in defining how to measure your success.

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Accountability and Collaboration

Effective Leaders who are accountable for the successes within a Company recognize the impact of collaboration. As Steven Covey identified in his book, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, there is strength in working together and collaboration. As Covey has said: “alone we can do so little; together we can do so much” and “none of us is as smart as all of us.”

Leading a Team can be rewarding and daunting. Encouraging collaboration reaps exceptionally more benefits than attempting to accomplish results alone. As a Leader, recognizing that accountability includes engaging and encouraging Teams to work together positions both the Leader and the Company for positive outcomes.

As you take accountability for the successes within your Company, ensure you are considering the role as a Leader to establish accountability habits, as discussed in our most recent newsletter.

Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you.

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Accountability & Taking Responsibility

In our most recent newsletter, we discussed some habits that encourage accountability within an organization. One of those habits is to take responsibility for leading. Here are some notable quotes on this:

  • “A hero is someone who understands the responsibility that comes with his freedom,” by Bob Dylan
  • Responsibility is something that should drive all aspects of our lives as Chuck Palahniuk said so well: “Find joy in everything you choose to do. Every job, relationship, home… it’s your responsibility to love it, or change it.”
  • “The price of greatness is responsibility,” Winston Churchill
  • Abraham Lincoln encouraged us to take responsibility right away when he said: “You cannot escape the responsibility of tomorrow by evading it today.”

What value is there in taking responsibility for improving your organization? It can create accountability and build operational effectiveness.

Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you in improving your Company’s operational effectiveness.

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Risks and Commitment

BusinessDictionary.com defines risk as “a probability or threat of damage, injury, liability, loss, or any other negative occurrence.” That definition could encourage folks to not act. Yet, on the flip side, one needs to consider the risk of not acting.

As a Business Leader, have you considered the implications of not committing to what needs to be done to achieve success for your Company? We continue to discuss the importance of the building blocks of operational effectiveness. What is the risk when a Company does not commit to building and strengthening its organization? Here are a few examples of what can happen:

  • Limits a Company’s opportunities for growth as a strong operational foundation has yet to be built
  • Increases the probability of errors as processes are not performed consistency and/or efficiently
  • Creates Customer, Staff and Management frustration because there is often lack of clarity of priorities
  • Wastes valuable time and resources resolving problems that arise

Helping a Company commit to building a strong operational foundation is what we do. Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you.

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If you prefer a do-it-yourself approach, check out My COO Resources.

Staying the Course

One of the challenges with commitment is that it is often difficult to stick with it. In a recent My COO Resources email, we shared some interesting statistics on how hard it is to stick with going to the gym. The point of the email was that even when we know there are many benefits to certain behavior (in this case, going to the gym), we have trouble staying the course.

We can be our own worst enemy as we allow external factors to compromise our ability to stay the course. As we continue to discuss building operational effectiveness and the commitment needed to do so, here are some hints to help:

  • Obtain clarity as to what the results will be if you stay committed to what you want to accomplish
  • Define what it takes to achieve the goal
  • Ensure this is a consistent priority
  • Establish accountability within your organization that will increase the probability of success

Whether you want to commit to going to the gym consistently or wanting to build operational effectiveness within your company, commitment positions you for success.

Do you need help staying the course? Contact Charlene Aldridge at 972.447.9787 or CharleneAldridge@aldridgekerr.com to discuss how we can assist you.

Sign up for our newsletter here.

If you prefer a do-it-yourself approach, check out My COO Resources.