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Rhythm Blog | Strategy Execution

by Patrick Thean and the Rhythm Team

The CEOs Strategy-Execution Gap...And How To Fix It

Cindy Praeger Sun, Mar 31, 2019 @ 10:44 PM

Written by Cindy Praeger and Eskinder Assefa

A fairly significant body of research now clearly shows that the reason why a number of mid-to-large companies face is not because their strategies were not sound, but because they were unable create a culture of strategy execution to perform well on those otherwise sound strategies.

Effective Goal Setting 101: How to Write an Effective SMART Goal [Infographic]

Jessica Wishart Sun, Mar 31, 2019 @ 11:00 AM

Successful SMART goal (priority) setting is an essential skill for both personal and professional success. If you aren’t setting goals, you’re likely not making progress. However, research by the University of Scranton found that 92% of people who set New Year's resolutions never achieve them.

Business goals don't fare much better; 67% of great strategies fail due to poor execution. Writing an effective goal will increase your chances of successfully achieving that goal, or quarterly rock. Fortunately, goal-setting is a skill that you can learn and improve.

Here are 6 Easy Steps to Writing Effective Goals and Priorities:

How to Create a KPI in 5 Simple Steps (Video)

Patrick Thean Fri, Mar 1, 2019 @ 04:47 PM

The common mistake many companies make is to start creating a bunch of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) for their company. They start with a burst of energy, gather together the team and work on KPIs in a quarterly planning session. They ask, "What do we need to measure in each department?" This produces 18 to 25 KPIs, a couple for each key executive to work on. Convinced they have changed the company, they dash off excited to see what results they will generate in the upcoming quarter. What they should be asking is "How do I create a KPI that measures my team's performance?"  A quarter later, many are demoralized and not much progress has been made measuring these KPIs. They lose steam and by the 3rd quarter, it's back to business as usual.

Download our free KPI Guide to help you drive results with KPIs.

What is the Difference Between a Primary and Secondary Core Customer?

Alan Gehringer Thu, Feb 28, 2019 @ 12:00 PM

I have written previously about the importance of identifying your core customer because I have seen far too many companies waste their valuable time and resources selling to and serving the "wrong" customers.  They haven't taken the necessary steps to identify their most valuable customers that purchased the primary product and were highly satisfied.

Your core customer is the one who values what you offer at a price and quantity that is good for both you and the customer and will take you into the future successfully. This is the individual that uses the product, the one you look in the eyes and can put a name to and the one you can’t live without. Knowing who the core customer is will impacts sales in a positive manner.

How to Implement a New Process at Work in 5 Steps

Tiffany Chepul Thu, Feb 28, 2019 @ 11:00 AM

As companies grow, the need to strategic establish implementation processes to help you scale becomes inevitable. We've all reached a place in our role when the way we used to do things no longer works and we have to innovate. Necessity becomes the mother of invention - there's really no way to avoid it in a healthy growing company.

The truth remains, however: implementing new processes at work is hard. It's some of the most difficult work that teams do. Some teams struggle with change itself - it pushes people out of their comfort zone and sometimes there is resistance. Other teams struggle to develop the processes themselves - they can't agree on the best way to proceed to improve the business process. Even if you can define a new process and make some headway on changing people's mindsets, there is still the uphill battle for implementing the key processes that turn plans into action. 

How Do Technical Review Meetings Work?

Ted Skinner Thu, Feb 28, 2019 @ 09:00 AM

At Rhythm Systems we help middle marketing companies get the most out of their meetings, from annual planning meetings to weekly team meetings to help companies get the most out of their strategic plans.  Recently we get some questions on how to conduct an technical review meeting.

A technical review meeting is very similar to how it sounds. It is a meeting of project professionals to discuss detailed planning and technical issues such as engineering, manufacturing, etc. The meeting allows you to identify specific issues and concerns.

The Five C's of Team Accountability (Updated for 2019)

Cathy McCullough Thu, Feb 28, 2019 @ 09:00 AM

From a leadership perspective, there’s a real thirst for increasing leadership accountability. Executives have recently asked me various questions that linger over the concept of building team accountability to help them achieve their strategic plans while creating high performing teams:

“How do I build accountability in teams?

What else can I do to get people to do what we need them to do?”

“How can I hold a team member to be held accountable and still be seen as a good leader?”

"How do I balance leadership accountability and personal accountability when building a team?"

Building team accountability requires that we understand a few dynamics because it’s more complicated than we might recognize.  It goes above and beyond the responsibility for the outcomes, which is obviously important, but effective leaders know that they need a culture of accountability in their teams that provide the inputs needed to achieve the expected team performance.

Creating Operational Synergy Between Cross Functional Teams

Tiffany Chepul Thu, Feb 28, 2019 @ 06:55 AM

One of the most important components of the Rhythm Systems, the Think-Plan-Do methodology is to implement a planning rhythm that includes the next level of management.  Taking Think-Plan-Do to operational teams creates alignment to the company plan and helps each team get focused on the next 90 days.  But, how can that help teams that need to work together?  How do you get two different operational teams to work together, not only in a positive way, but in a way that produces maximum impact on results?

Scaling Up Your Business Execution With Rockefeller Habits 2.0

Jessica Wishart Wed, Feb 27, 2019 @ 11:04 AM

When companies are small, it’s not such a challenge to get things done. Maybe you have a meeting (where the whole company attends), you come up with an idea, and you go out there and do it. Everyone was there from the beginning, everyone understands the plan, and everyone does their part to get it done. That’s not to say there aren’t challenges with execution for small companies, but typically, if small companies do a good job hiring the right people, figuring out their strategy, and ensuring there is enough cash to run the business, then execution is something that can easily be managed. However, as your company grows and the people who come up with the ideas and plans are no longer the ones who are actually doing all the work, successfully executing the plan gets much more difficult.

The Plight of the Task Delayer

Paige Wilcox Wed, Feb 20, 2019 @ 11:00 AM

Do you put off minor to-dos until they build up and become absolutely urgent? Why do we do this to ourselves, and how can we procrastinators break our vicious cycles?

Writer Amanda Mull addressed this very topic in an article in The Atlantic called, "Why People Wait 10 Days to Do Something That Takes 10 Minutes." She cited that many of us fall into a "task delayer" category (as opposed to a "chronic procrastinator," which is described as a more intense but rarer type, thankfully).