The best plan is only good intentions unless it degenerates into work.
The distinction that marks a plan capable of producing results is the commitment of key people to work on specific tasks. Unless such commitment is made, there are only promises and hopes, but no plan. A plan needs to be tested by asking managers, “Which of your best people have you put on this work today?” The manager who comes back (as most of them do) and says, “But I can’t spare my best people now. They have to finish what they are doing now before I can put them to work tomorrow,” is simply admitting that he does not have a plan.
Work implies accountability, a deadline, and finally, the measurement of results, that is, feedback from results on the work. What we measure and how we measure determine what will be considered relevant, and determine, thereby, not just what we see, but what we – and others do.
ACTION POINT: Establish specific numerical criteria and goals to measure results. Set deadlines for yourself and your organization to achieve these results.