Turbo Leadership Systems

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Issue 20 To our clients and friends November 9, 2004
Prior Planning With the Performance Team
Insures Proper Startup and Profits
Larry W. Dennis, Sr.
Turbo Leadership

One hour in planning can save hundreds of hours in execution

Ron, project manager for a large construction company in eastern Washington told Session 8B of the Leadership Development Lab™:

"I had a new project starting up and knew I needed to put together a list of everything that would be needed to get the job up and running and off to the best start possible. I learned long ago that projects that start well, run well and end up profitable. I really tried to think of everything that we would need for a smooth job startup and came up with what I thought was a very complete list. I looked at the job from all the different angles I could think of and felt I had thought of every aspect of the job. I took the list to my manager and, after we reviewed it, he suggested I go to the person who would be the superintendent on the job to review the scope of the job and go over the list of needed items to see if it looked complete to him.

"I was pretty sure my list was solid and complete, but I agreed to go through with the exercise of meeting with the superintendent to satisfy my boss anyway.

"After the meeting with my superintendent, to my chagrin, I realized my list was neither solid nor complete. My superintendent had many good suggestions and ideas about what was needed for a smooth job startup. He was looking

at the job from a totally different angle than I had. His position within the company gave him a different perspective than mine - his position kept him out in the field, and my position kept me in the office. By combining our different understandings, we came up with a far more complete look at the project and therefore a more complete understanding of what would be needed for a quick, smooth startup.

"The lesson I learned from this experience is to keep my mind open. I learned the importance of asking for and listening with an open mind to the input of others, especially those closest to the work.

"The action I call you to take is to go to the people you are working with and get their ideas and input. Be sure to include as many people as possible that will be either working on the job or involved in the planning of the job. They have a different view from yours and therefore have ideas that differ from yours. By combining the input of all perspectives, you will have a complete picture.

"The benefit you will gain is more knowledge about what is needed to do your job and help others with their jobs. You will continue to find ways of performing at higher levels, reduce costs, increase profits and improve customer satisfaction."