I can’t stop recommending and revisiting my highlighted passages in The Four Disciplines of Execution by Chris McChesney and Sean Covey.
I love business books that not only explain a model in normal language, but also help you understand how to put it into action step-by-step. This is one of those books. After I discovered The Four Disciplines, I had an opportunity to apply it immediately with a client. I developed a workshop based on the book that I used to walk the client through implementing their freshly developed strategy into an action plan. When all was said and done, we were successful ensuring every employee in the organization, from the CEO to the ground floor, had documented goals and performance metrics that collectively moved the strategy forward. This is the stuff we dream about when doing a strategic plan, but in all honestly it rarely ever ends up actually happening as seamlessly as we would like. That’s why I was so impressed with this book and the model – it is easy to understand, and it works!
So—what’s it about? Here’s the gist:
We all get caught in the “whirlwind” of our daily work (urgent activity, not always necessarily what’s important), and often don’t make time to focus on the work we need to do to give us strategic breakthroughs. If you follow the 4 Disciplines model, you can fit strategy execution into your day to day, ensuring that the strategy becomes a reality vs. a fantasy you spent a lot of money and time on, but never really implemented…
The Four Disciplines:
- Focusing on the wildly important (focus)
- Act on lead measures (leverage)
- Keep a compelling scorecard (engagement)
- Create a cadence of accountability (accountability)
The writing in The Four Disciplines of Execution (or 4DX as one client has called it) is easy and clear to understand, and the book does a great job of breaking the process into chapters for step by step implementation. This has made it easy for me to share and discuss the concepts of the model with clients, and we have now used the workshop to help several clients through this process to implement their strategic plans.
I highly recommend the book, or if you’re ready to put it into action, call SPARK and we can help you with a workshop to implement the four disciplines in your organization.