Get Things Done: Create a Business Culture of Execution

As a business coach, I often explain the differences and importance of Vision and Execution. Put vision is deciding what to do. Execution is all about making it happen. It’s the follow-through. So my question to you this week is: ‘Do you have a culture of execution?’

This article looks at what it means to have a business execution culture and how your business will grow and benefit by improving your team. If you are looking for a business advisor in Melbourne, contact Business Benchmark Group on 03 9001 0878 today.

Meetings reveal the business culture

You don’t need to be an expert to see whether a business has a strong culture of execution or follow-through. It’s usually obvious. Just sit through a few team meetings, and you’ll quickly get the idea.

If the meeting is centred on a presentation with one person doing all the talking and the rest of the team sitting there quietly, not asking questions and being curious, there is a problem.

Likewise, if everyone leaves the meeting with no clear sense of what will happen next, or the leader sits quietly throughout, you can safely say there is no culture of execution.

So how do you know if you are cultivating an execution culture?

Cultivating a culture of execution

Meetings with short and to-the-point messages should be taking place. They should be presented by team members who highlight what’s working and what’s not, and everyone should suggest what to do about it.

Team members in these meetings are comfortable questioning and debating an idea or process. Everyone leaving the room should clearly know what needs to happen next, by who and when.

taking meeting notes

Having a minute taker at the meeting is a must. Having someone who holds everyone accountable by saying, “so who is responsible and when will that be completed by” is also a must.

When you have the whole team, buy into this process, with everyone able to ‘weigh in’ with their ideas but with everyone leaving the meeting with a clear sense of goals, timelines and next steps, then this is a business that has created a flourishing culture of execution and more so a business that has an aligned common goal.

Of course, if you are injecting your business with the culture of execution where there has been none, or if you are at the point of pushing your business through to the next level, then as leaders, we need to be aware that there will be various speed bumps or breakthrough moments.

Different Types of Pressure

We all know what it’s like to be under the pump, to feel like we’re being pushed and pulled in a million directions and can’t see the way ahead. Applying pressure is the only way to break through when things get like this.

There are two types of pressure that you as a leader can apply or indeed may feel yourselves: negative and positive. Being aware of how these pressures make you feel and understand that this is part of pushing through to the next level is very important.

Negative pressure 

It is when you get pushed to your breaking point because you or your team feel as if you are stuck. You don’t know what you don’t know. You can’t see the next step. If you feel like this, you have two choices: either run away or hang around and get through this emotion to the point of breakthrough.

If you stay under this pressure, you will become more and more perturbed until you break through. To achieve this breakthrough, you and your team have to break up what’s not working, break with old habits that weren’t moving you forward and break away from people and environments that are not good for you. It would help if you broke down exactly where you and your team are. It’s not always easy. Everybody goes through pain.

Negative pressure holds us back because we are not skilled enough or strong enough to deal with it, so we live unfulfilling lives. Instead of hanging around and facing the issues, people run, and so their problems never go away. Until you break up, break with, break away and break down, you and your team won’t go anywhere and will ultimately not realize your vision.

Positive pressure 

It is deciding that you and your team are going for it – you will create a culture of execution. Having completed the vision, you make the goals and obtain the buy-in from both yourself and your team. Setting targets and having planned activities to reach them creates positive pressure that will pull you forward. It’s forging ahead with a clear destination and a plan to get you there.

It is growth mode pressure or culture of execution, a culture of completing things that helps you to shape your business and realize the vision. It’s about your team being behind the identity and consistently pushing forward. Stretching the identity provides positive pressure. Otherwise, life’s good, so why would we forge ahead? There’s no positive pressure.

You can’t get under positive pressure without getting rid of negative pressure first, so your initial task is to deal with whatever issues you and your team are facing before you try to move on. Once you have cleared the negative together, you can start thinking long-term. You will stay aligned with your strategic plan and build a culture of execution. Everyone can focus. No one will be forced to make hasty decisions to avert the latest calamity.

So this week, have a moment of brutal truth – have you created a culture of execution in your business? Are you getting the right things completed? If the answer is no, what will you do about it?

Culture starts with the leader

How can you expect your business to create a culture of execution if you, the leader, do not have your attitude of commission? A business coach can help you reignite your drive, identify what is essential in your business, set a vision and execute your plan.

Business Benchmark Group has coached countless Melbourne small and medium businesses to achieve growth. It all starts with the leader. 


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