execution: the art of getting things done

One of the core competencies of leadership is to dream a preferred future. For most leaders dreaming is something that comes natural to them. They’re wired up to push towards the future and bring people with them. After all leadership is all about change…moving from here to there. The majority of leaders and churches don’t struggle with dreaming about the future. That’s not typically where we get bogged down. Where most churches begin to lose traction is actually taking real steps to make the vision happen…execution. After all who cares if you can dream, if you can’t get it done? Execution is the key.

Below are three simple ways to approach execution:

1. Sequential

Sequentially driven execution is all about taking any number of steps in the correct order. It’s as simple as following the directions to put together IKEA furniture. Which isn’t always as simple as it sounds; in fact I usually have parts left over. Am I the only one? Sequential execution begins with taking a birds eye view of the project and determining how many steps it will take to get there and in what order they should be taken. Take the steps out of order and your IKEA chair that you just put together falls to the floor when you sit on it. The key question in sequential execution is, “What is the next step?”

2. Chronological

Chronologically driven execution is all about deadlines. It focuses on the deadline for delivery. Great change can be implemented by delivering on a number of small deadlines over an extended period of time. But miss the deadline and you miss your window of opportunity. The key question in chronological execution is, “When is this due?”

3. Priority

Priority driven execution is all about values. Understanding the values of the organization and making decisions to both reflect and build a culture that embodies those values. The values of the organization act as a filter to help you determine how to put what Peter Drucker calls, “First things first.” The key question in priority execution is, “What is the most important thing to get done?”

At the end of the day even a mediocre strategy with great execution trumps the best idea that is stuck at the starting gate.

Posted in Leadership

2 Responses to “execution: the art of getting things done”

  1. Rattan March 22, 2012 at 3:38 am #

    For me there’s one hindrance of effective leadership towards achievement of goals. And that is motivation.

  2. Paul Alexander March 22, 2012 at 5:11 pm #

    Rattan, motivation is HUGE…without the drive to move forward the team is dead in the water. It takes doing the hard work of discovering the key to each team member’s heart!

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