Many business professionals around the globe wake up every morning and write out their “To-Do” lists for the day. They think they are organized and well prepared and attain a feeling of self-satisfaction when they are able to cross things off of their lists. Hopefully they are truly accomplishing things at work that will yield positive business results.
The challenge for most of us is making sure the things we have on our task lists are aligned to and support the execution of the strategy of the organizations we work for. In business leadership, there is nothing worse than having well-intentioned people working very hard accomplishing the wrong things. In thinking about this issue I started formulating a method and came up with the Strategic Task Assessment Test (STAT), a quick and easy diagnostic to gauge whether or not you have a business strategy or a list of tasks. Below are the assessment questions.
Will the accomplishment of this task specifically…
- Help my company achieve the delivery of its value proposition to our customers?
- Create alignment between the business function I work in and other business functions?
- Enable me to meet my personal goals and objectives?
- Enable my team to meet their team goals and objectives?
- Enable my company to meet its goals and objectives?
Let’s apply the STAT to Fred Krome, the VP of Manufacturing for ABC, Inc. a world leader in the design, development, and delivery of high quality, innovative products. ABC’s customers are typically early adopters and want new and state-of-the-art products. ABC missed both their sales and profit targets last year and believe the slowdown in the economy is the primary reason.
Fred has been at ABC, Inc. for 22 years and has been the VP of Manufacturing for the past six years.
Here’s is Fred’s task list for today:
So what do you think? This list looks very typical and you probably thought to yourself that if Fred can get all of this done he’s being very productive.
Unfortunately every one of the tasks on Fred’s list FAILS the assessment test. Here’s why:
Take a moment to review your task list and see how it does in the STAT assessment. Chances are you need to be a little more strategic and less tactically oriented to be effective with the value proposition.