Today’s business landscape can be complex. Businesses are generally no longer stand-alone organizations and are instead an amalgamation of services aggregated by the company in order to provide maximum value to the customer while managing cost, quality, strategic positioning and agility.  If this is the nature of your business, then this article may be of interest to you.

Making all of this work seamlessly together is no small task. It can be complex, and since agile organizations need to manage change and since agility is a core competency in most of today’s organizations, leaders need to balance perfection with speed. Too much of a swing in either direction generally results in less than optimal results.

So what is a leader to do? Here are five ideas for you as you lead your organization:

1)  Don’t expect to always make the right decision the first time! Make decisions that are likely to help your organization, that are not likely to hurt your organization, and from which you can learn in a metrics-based manner.  Intentionally and with a factually informed perspective balance speed with cost and quality. Don’t let one affect your company at the expense of the other two. 

2)  Change! Since your original decisions are not likely to always have perfectly optimal results, learn quickly, adapt, and then change. Be agile in iterating on quality. Always be climbing the value ladder, even if it is one step at a time. Don’t expect to jump directly from the ground to the roof.

3)  Instill this approach into your corporate culture! Where failure is not an option, then you need to be more conservative, but where incremental learning-based activities can take place, allow them to take place. Let your staff go down the same path you go down. Celebrate wins, even small ones, and celebrate learning from the opportunities lost, and most importantly, celebrate the additional gains derived from the tuning activities as a result of the learnings. Your team will develop alongside you and you will move closer to a truly high performing team. 

4)  Hire learners and growers, not task performers! The ability to move the bits and bytes or processes and procedures around is the price of entry. The price of success is the desire to learn and grow and participate in the iterative process that facilitates an effective, competitive, agile organization. 

5)  Stay in the batters box! Don’t quit. Keep trying. If one thing doesn’t work, try another. Be as informed as possible, but don’t let a drive for perfection get in the way of the immediate benefit of Good or Very Good. Speed and agility are core to success in today’s business environment. 


- Scot Berkey, Managing Director