Charlie Brown in Peanuts cartoon: “Someday, we will die, Snoopy.”
Snoopy: “True, but on all other days, we will not.”
As simple as it may appear, the response seems to be profound and something which most of us take it as granted. Do we really think of doing something great, something different, every day when we get up and realize that we are alive?
News media, these days, seem to be creating enough negativity by showing the news that can generate more TRP rather than bringing out more good, genuine and inspirational news. Obviously, the moment you read newspapers daily, the first thought is – “How I can survive in this world today?”, “How am I going to tackle today’s problems and issues – be it at office or household?” By the time we solve some issues (if at all) the issues for that day, we tend to convince ourselves that we have done a great job, accomplished something and have a right to feel tired! The moment we fool ourselves of this last bit – so called “tiredness”, we are ready to procrastinate rest of the activities easily. Facebook, WhatsApp (as if we spend less time on Facebook and WhatsApp throughout the day) or TV (or these days, YouTube videos) get lined up to “relax” (or should I say for further wastage of time?). I don’t mean to say that Facebook or WhatsApp are totally useless. However, the wastage of time on the name of its “usage” is what I think is overlooked.
Well, you get the point, right? The question to be solved on the table is how do we get less distracted, reduce wastage of time and use the tools more effectively.
Thankfully, we seem to have lesser of such challenges this year. The answer perhaps to this, is in our team engagement. Our second layer of leadership seems to be ready to take up new challenges. This year, we have planned to increase the team size significantly. We have strategized a few different initiatives that can be taken up by associate team members with the mentoring of senior players. We do not want to call it as Version 3.0 of eStomi though. Cross pollinating our team members with different technologies continue and so do our efforts to develop their personalities to take up consulting in a more effective way.
We seem to have been decently positioned in ITSM market having bagged few long term projects. As you are aware, since last year, we have also increased the number of tools on which we provide consulting. Thankfully, most of the new customers that we get on board seem to have new and different requirements/challenges that help us to understand the trend in a better way, keeps us on our toes and question of distraction or time wastage seldom occurs to us as our engagement velocity is quite high.
Back to the question for less distraction, we can suggest few pointers based on our experience and what we usually do to tackle it –
- Define the activities EVERYDAY and track them to completion. This seems easier said than done. This actually sets a culture in the team of taking an ownership of tasks and completing them. Earlier, the frequency was a weekly one; however, we realized that tracking it daily helps to action it out faster and reduce delays.
- SHARE the new learning, designs, mistakes regularly with other team members so that they can learn or adapt as much as possible. This is similar to ‘Defect Prevention’ exercise carried out in 5th Level of CMM model.
- CREATE a flat model as much as possible to pass a message that senior people may not be right all the time. Encourage junior people to come out with their new ideas/design rather than relying on the existing ones. Building team and convincing everybody that team work is better than individual takes time due to egos and different personalities.
- Ensure LEARNING CURVE is steep and exceptional by getting the team exposed not only to new technologies but also on different topics or discussions regularly.
- EVALUATE frequently if the team members are on right track of their career paths as well as aligned to the objectives laid by the organization. Ensure to take steps by providing feedback and get them onto the track by discussing on the road map.
Well, this may or may not be all the pointers; however, they have been useful for us. Have you derived how would you reduce time wastage and ensure more effectiveness, how do you plan to lead 2016 better than earlier years?