If I had to pick one activity, habit or tool that would be the most significant thing a business could implement to get powerful business results, I would say it would be the habit of goals. And, by “habit of goals”, I am not referring to the habit of setting goals.
I am talking about the habit of setting powerful, focused goals and implementing a system to monitor the progress and deliver on these goals.
This is why I use one page tools like the Strategy Summary to clearly define where my business is going and to measure progress against these targets. I have seen businesses and non-profits alike make stunning progress in their market space simply by focusing their leadership and their staff on their most important objectives and reinforcing these priorities each and every day.
Ray Dalio is the founder of the investment firm Bridgewater Associates. He had an estimated net worth of $15.4 billion in 2014 according to Forbes! So, what does Ray Dalio have to do with your business?
Probably nothing directly. But, based on his net worth, Dalio knows business so we should learn from him! He came up with a simple model that describes a business or an organization that has worked well for him over the years. I would suggest that understanding his simple model is critical to the success of your business. The model is shown in the picture for this blog post (note that I have exercised my artistic license and added a few items for clarity!)
As business leaders, each of us is responsible to produce results in our organizations. Results drive our businesses. Without achieving positive results, a business is really worthless. Dalio‘s model illustrates that a business starts with a Vision and then delivers business results or Outcomes through a Machine. The model stresses that the Outcomes are a direct result of the Vision and the Machine (both of which are defined below);
I have written about the Business Compass tool in a number of blog posts recently. The Business Compass is a tool that can be a very powerful way of communicating your organization’s;
4) Strategic and Operational Priorities
5) Brand Promise
6) Leadership behaviors
I have defined all the components of the Business Compass except for Leadership Behaviors in past blog posts. So, what are Leadership Behaviors?