The Power of the Quick Win

February 5, 2009

Since I started here at Miva Direct, we’ve been pushing our team internally to execute in the most expeditious manner possible.  All hands on deck brainstorming sessions, long hours and full commitment from everyone involved. The results have been better than anyone could have expected with this down economy.  Here’s why;

Quick Wins

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The executive team spend a full day at an offsite meeting outlining the quickest way to generate our desired results (revenue) in the most efficient manner using all resources we have at our fingertips (ie, no new hires). It worked well, and we’re reaping the rewards as we approach mid-Q1

Here’s how we did it

1.      Made people believers not bystanders – we engaged the help of everyone from Account Managers to Directors and VP’s.  Everyone has had a hand in this success, and taken ownership.

2.      Understood uncertainty – Moving forward in this manner, we didn’t sugar coat things with the team. They understand the implications of this economy and understand they can have a hand in their own destiny.

3.      Show humility – The executive team has had to ask for help. Ideas that may not have been touched on during the meeting were add

4.      Learn about your team – We’ve had to ask people to take on roles and responsibilities that may not have been in their job description and this has been a huge success.  Our team is so talented. I’m surprised and impressed by them daily. We’ve given them the opportunity to shine.

 

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What we didn’t do – that could have destroyed our efforts: boss

1. Focus too heavily on details – we used the theory of Occam’s razor – or the Law of Economy.

2. Reacting negatively to criticism – We understood that we needed to improve. We put our heads down and did.

3. Intimidating others – We didn’t used idle threats to motivate. We enlisted the help of our teammates, and empowered them to move.

4. Jumping to conclusions – We stayed open to suggestions and guidance from the team, and didn’t assume anything.

5. Micromanaging – We trusted our people to execute.

Go get some quick wins!

We did..

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Managing Change

January 11, 2009

It’s all too obvious in our current economic climate to discuss that the only constant is change.  The one and only thing reliable and consistent in the interactive space is certainly change.  Rapid, busting bronco  – pissed off change.  Spikes to the north – spikes to the south. Companies explode – companies implode.  People have meteoric rises, people have meteoric crashes to earth.  

Managing this change is not easy.

Here are a few pointers:

1. Understand change

– If you currently feel like there needs to be change in your company, I want you to  write down the changes you’d like – and now plan for them.  understand how to execute these changes step by step. Understand everything, from each person you want to get involved to every result you want to see – now go and do it!

-If you’re resisting change – I want you to ask yourself why? I know that the positive effects of change (at first) can seem much more obvious than the negative – but ask yourself what you’re afraid of, and move forward with change even if it scares you. 

2. Plan for change

Focusing on your goals can help you plan for change.  Decide what your vision statement is (on a personal level) – keep it short and sweet – maybe one or two sentences, and execute. If you’re confronted with corporate culture (truthfully, what I know that I’m up against currently)  – then change corporate culture through yourself, and through individuals. 

3. Implement your own change

This is going to sound like something your third grade teacher may have said to you – but maybe we all need to re-visit the foundation of what’s made us who we are – honestly isn’t the best policy -it’s the only policy. Give the full picture of why you feel there needs to be change (huge revenue goals for example), draw people in (find the appropriate talent), and convey to them your passion and roadmap for success.  Brief the best talent as often as possible. Make training the centerpiece of any change you wish to implement.

Some ways to communicate change:

* Media – Newsletters – trade publications, THIS BLOG, anything to get your message of change out.

* Presentations – Present to large and small groups alike. 

*Training –  Set up training sessions for management workshops, and skill training as well

* Team Meetings – discuss issues, don’t hesitate to take any issue head on. Air problems, and suggest solutions. My team meets formally twice a week, and I feel we’re just scratching the surface.

* Trouble Shooting – regular feedback is essential.  Team problem solving and progress briefing sessions help to keep everyone’s eye on the ball.

4. Consolidate change in your own company

If progress for change lapses – the first thing you should do is look to yourself. Understand if you have set up the appropriate manner in which you can track and monitor change. Have you set up the appropriate way to measure any change that you wish to implement?  How are you measuring the response of prospects? Customers?  Employees?  Subordinates?  

Continue to attempt to maintain momentum, and continually assess your skills.

I know I do.

good luck.  

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