– forward motion fueled by a series of wins
You know you have momentum when things seem easier. You or your organization is in a groove… on the other hand, if you have no momentum…everything (even the seemingly simple) is hard.
If there is a lack of momentum…
- Check commitment to mission
- Check results of mission
Three components of sustained momentum – New, Improved, Improving
Anything new triggers momentum. Negative – natural disaster creates a lot of “new” and triggers momentum. Positive – new service offering, new leadership team, new baseball season , new mission…etc.
- Momentum is never created by “tweaking” something. Blow it up Launch something brand new.
- “Mediocrity doesn’t create momentum!!”
- Momentum is sustained through continuous improvement
- Continuous improvement requires systematic evaluation, unfiltered evaluation (you know, the type of evaluation where people may get their feelings hurt) and nothing & nobody be off limits in the discussion.
- Lead towards change and manage towards sameness
- We need to evaluate constantly – especially the areas that have momentum. The sand in the hour glass will run out no matter how innovative the idea once was – keep evaluating, keep improving.
- Where are we “manufacturing energy” to get something done vs. passionately attacking it? Think about the project or area that keeps getting pushed down on the priority list and it is like pulling teeth to get people to do it.
- Momentum requires friction – anything that reduces friction reduces momentum.
- Your people need to be on board for your vision to have momentum. This assumes you have a clearly defined and communicated vision.
- Don’t delegate responsibilities – it simply creates followers
- Delegate authority – this creates leaders
- People stay with a group if they are growing, needed and/or known.
- Create a culture where people can grow and go – you need new personnel for momentum, they need new opportunities for theirs.
- Create an environment of questioning organizational assumptions
- Are we doing what is effective?
- What is not working?
- Where are our ideas coming from?
- Do we have the right people, with the right skills, in the right roles?
- Disengaged leader (not emotional present, not committed to the mission, etc.)
- Overactive management (putting everything into a repeatable process). Managers are a necessary balance to leaders but they are not going to be the ones creating momentum.
- Without managers – pure chaos
- Without leaders – no momentum, just sameness
- Complexity – things may be hard, but they don’t need to be complex. Competing services, metrics, goals and agendas add complexity!
- A breach of trust! (character does matter!!)