What clients report:
“Our best record of downtime was 8-9%. The 3% we achieved was previously unthinkable and therefore “couldn’t be done.”
“4Q, and especially December, have always been poor and usually not profitable. This year we had a record volume and profit in both.”
“In July we were down the tubes and we ended the year with a 26% return on net assets.”
“Our unit is really communicating. We’re speaking unbelievable commitments and delivering on them.”
Most of the time, we do what is predictable or get caught up in business as usual. We get comfortable with our past-based way of being and operating and, hence, with the kind of results we have been producing.
If we do want to improve results, the usual approach is “we can do better if we stretch ourselves” – that means do the same kinds of things we have been doing, but work harder and longer. Generally, this does produce an incremental increase in results. However, working harder and longer is not sustainable – it burns people out.
Some goals are clearly absurd or blue sky, and when considered are hard to own and be committed to.
However, there is a range between mere stretch and blue sky – that is the realm of breakthrough or stunning results – where you don’t know how to get there, but committing to that “feels right” and appropriate and worth the risk and investment.
Some client breakthrough results:
- A company buying themselves back out from being owned by a conglomerate – something not even conceivable when first proposed.
- A project designed to deliver a previously financially non-viable, offshore oil field development delivered six months early and over £80 million under budget
- Coaching a project manager to align his team to have zero deaths on a large construction project in China – at a time when having 6-12 people die during construction was, at the time, the norm for major construction projects – and having that achieved.