In her latest blog, “How to Create a Culture of Speed,” Stack answers the question by discussing agile organizations and high-performance teams.
“Nowadays you have to put the pedal to the metal, or the go-getters will leave you eating their dust, taking big bites off the edges of your market,” Stack says. “You can’t compete effectively without an agile internal culture capable of reducing time-to-market and cycle speed for all essential processes.”
Stack directs readers to consider the following principles for creating a culture of speed:
1. Perfect your systems. Create and document procedures for every type of task handled by a team. Make sure everyone involved learns these procedures, providing them with training if needed.
“Ask yourself how fast you can be up and running if you lose a key person,” Stack says. “Consistently update your procedures to match current reality, so nothing is ever out of date.”
2. Establish a broad support base. Managers and team leaders should do everything possible to encourage investment from all team personnel. Spread authority so the workflow process doesn’t break down when one person is away, hesitant, or not allowed to make a basic decision.
“Motivate your people in every way you can think of,” Stack says. “Keep careful track of performance—
3. Eliminate myopia. When working closely with other teams, develop intergroup protocols to smooth the way.
4. Communicate effectively. Every member of a team must fully understand the organization’
“Provide feedback immediately when someone requests or requires you to do so,” Stack says. “Don’t play word games with anyone: tell your co-workers, subordinates, and even your bosses precisely what you want and when you need it.”
5. Leverage technology. Use techno-tools to maximize speed, but avoid letting sparkly time wasters like social media become distractions that suck up valuable time.
“Upgrade production technology (including software) whenever you can afford to and the benefits warrant it,” Stack says. “Become an early-adopter of proven, useful new devices.”
In the most effective organizations, everything moves swiftly. Innovative organizations that can effectively maximize their velocity will pull ahead in the business race, as others stagnate or falter. Stack says her tips can help an organization become one of the winners.
“If you’re running all out and can’t seem to get anywhere, perhaps something’s wrong with your organizational culture,” Stack says. “Take a look at the items I’ve outlined in this blog, think deeply about each point, and remember this: even if it seems everyone else has forgotten, you’re all in this together.
“Find ways to work with or around everyone—so your team, at least, can keep moving the organization forward.”
For information on creating a culture of speed, visit http://www.TheProductivityPro.com website, Email Laura@TheProductivityPro.com, or call 303-471-7401.
About Laura Stack:
Laura Stack is a time management and productivity expert who has been speaking and writing about human potential and peak performance since 1992. She has implemented employee productivity improvement programs at Wal-Mart, Cisco Systems, UBS, Aramark, and Bank of America. Stack presents keynotes and seminars internationally for leaders, entrepreneurs, salespeople, and professional services firms on improving output, lowering stress, and saving time in the workplace.
The president of The Productivity Pro®, Inc., a time management firm specializing in high-stress environments, Stack is the bestselling author of five books: “What to do When There’s Too Much to do” (2012); “SuperCompetent”