Retention Tactics, What’s not going to change, 4 Forces of Growth & The case for a Chief of Staff
27 November 2022 Newsletter
“You’re either in the time and effort economy or you’re in the results economy” Dan Sullivan
Hope you’re Thriving!
I was talking on a podcast this week about the new book Onboarded, and the host asked me, “What is the one thing you wish you knew when you were 20 years old?”.
I thought for a few moments and replied, “The importance of consistency and how that leads to the power of compounding.”
That’s what is really at the heart of most of our goals. If you’ve failed at something or didn’t achieve what you wanted, is it because you weren’t consistent and didn’t achieve the compounding to get to that goal? It’s got me thinking about that.
Here are a few other things that might interest you from my past week’s interaction with the world.
What’s Not Going To Change
Along the theme of consistency, I came across this quote from Jeff Bezos in the past week, which paints an interesting lens on what we focus on when considering opportunity:
“I very frequently get the question, what’s going to change in the next ten years?
I almost never get asked the question what’s not going to change in the next ten years?
And I submit to you that that second question is actually the more important of the two because you can build a business strategy around the things that are stable in time.
In our retail business we know that customers want low prices, and I know that’s going to be true ten years from now. They want fast delivery they want vast selection. It’s impossible to imagine a future ten years from now where a customer comes up and says, ‘Jeff, I love Amazon. I just wish the prices were a little higher’, or ‘I love Amazon, I just wish you’d deliver a little more slowly’. Impossible.
And so the effort we put into those things, spinning those things up, we know the energy we put into it today will still be paying off dividends for our customers ten years from now. When you have something that you know is true, even over the long term, you can afford to put a lot of energy into it.”
When one of your leaders is presented with an opportunity to move jobs and leave the company, what’s going to make the difference between their talking to a salesperson (recruiter) who is trying to make a sale and saying they’re not interested?
Some teams I work with effectively use ESOPs or share plans/bonuses to motivate leaders to stay. But if you’ve not got the type of business where that would easily work, or it’s not common, an easy tactic is for them to have something to look forward to.
Many years ago, I would take our team to social outings like comedy shows or once per year to Rottnest, an island resort off the coast 30 minutes away, for a big party to celebrate the end of the year.
One of the teams I work with has taken this idea and run with it by deciding to hold next year’s annual planning for the leadership team in Europe. So we’ll be traveling together and spending an extra couple of days, which is something the entire team will be looking forward to all year!
And I suspect if recruiters contact them during the year, they’ll respond that they’re not interested!
The Case for a Chief of Staff
It’s quite possible that many of you have never experienced the role of Chief of Staff first-hand. Perhaps you only know of it from US Politics and TV. I’ve seen it work well in a few teams I’ve worked with, and this week I came across an interesting article outlining the case for a Chief of Staff (CoS).
In the mid-market environment, the CoS autonomously helps people execute their priorities, leading to sharp gains in productivity and impact. The CoS role is decidedly different from that of the leader’s executive assistant (EA). Unlike an EA, a chief of staff works autonomously and does not handle routine correspondence or manage the leader’s day-to-day schedule. The highest-level CoS should be a full-fledged senior leadership team member, albeit without a C-suite officer’s rank or compensation.
This week I came across an article that outlined the case for a Chief of Staff, which contained these seven interesting questions.
If you’re an executive looking to increase your effectiveness, these seven questions will help you decide whether a CoS might help you:
- Are you spending enough time on the vital A items on your agenda, or are you frustrated by time spent on B and C items?
- Do you have enough “white space” in your calendar to consider future opportunities, or is most of your time spent reacting to what has already happened?
- As you deliberate on the decisions that only you can make, are you getting the best available information? After you’ve made a call, do you get surprised by new information that you should have known?
- Is it common for you to feel unprepared for important meetings or when making important decisions? Do you get information soon enough for you to think through the consequences before having to act?
- Are problems identified early enough that action can be taken before they create damage, or is it common for large problems to occur unexpectedly? When that happens, do you find that some of your senior people were also unprepared?
- Do political or cultural factors—such as relationship problems between powerful subordinates or destructive gamesmanship between competing departments—block progress? Does the culture encourage resistance to change or insulated silos rather than embracing new ways to improve?
- When you direct that some action be taken or ask for data on a particular issue, do you often not hear back until you remind people? When managers say they will follow up, do you have confidence that they will?
A Chief of Staff might not be for everyone, but it’s undoubtedly worth appreciating the value the role brings.
Read here: The Case for a Chief of Staff
New Growth Group Program 2023
The Growth Group Program is suitable for businesses with $1m to $10m in revenues.
The purpose is to help you grow yourself, your team, and your company. To drive your goals and impact your life. The program consists of CEO coaching as well as facilitated strategic planning workshops with your leadership team working through a customised, structured strategic planning program.
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Not sure if this may be suitable for you and your team?
Watch the video below for more info. Then, send us an email so we can determine if this group is the right fit for your team.
This Week on The Growth Whisperers Podcast
The Four Forces of Growth: What CEO’s need to focus on to sustain growth
What do CEO’s need to focus on to sustain growth?
This week we’re talking about a new book that Kevin is working on entitled The Four Forces of Growth. We talk about the four forces, why they matter and what you can do to focus on growth.
We have also included on our website an excerpt from Kevin’s website outlining the Four Forces of Growth.
Listen to The Growth Whisperers
Or watch it on YouTube
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