The need to regularly inject excitement and liveliness to overcome the inherent monotony is a universal challenge, in what I call the Siamese Twins of Business, “Sales and Production”, the core functions of the Rhythm Chakra. I would compare this to our need to take a break for introspection, occasionally, despite our busy mundane mechanical schedule.
I am sure those of you holding the fort in sales and production have similar analogies. I call them as Siamese Twins of Business, since both are inseparable, have a common outcome of quality delivery, one, Orders, and the other, Products. Both need exceptional people skills. Both are directly responsible for the business oxygen, Cashflow.
The effective good practices like, breaking down the strategies to simple daily goals, realistic planning with a buffer, daily performance review, sunrise/sunset standing meeting or daily SCRUM, based on the daily formal visualized progress reports, may sometimes become monotonous, needing some excitement and liveliness to retain the high energy levels needed for success.
Just like us succumbing to hope, instead of taking a break for introspection, organizations succumb to hope too. Hope is the biggest enemy of these Siamese Twins of Business, especially so, with Dr Murphy persistently being there. Most of the days the front-line managers in sales and production know by midday what the day’s outcome would be. Despite knowing that the daily goals will be missed, front-line managers very often rely on hope, that things will turn around in the second half. People being people, the same phenomenon is rather common with department heads, when it comes to monthly outcomes.
Two of our recent clients overcame this inertia and choose to take a break for introspection.
One started fulfilling 100% sales targets within 3 months from a stagnating 85% and the other started fulfilling 100% Customer OTIF (On-Time-In-Full) Deliveries, again within 3 months from a highly fluctuating OTIF, with a best performance of 60%.
We first got everyone thinking freely by injecting excitement and liveliness for opening out as we established a buy-in and common understanding of the reality and the success strategy, through our invention, doHow®. We deep dived with our hands on approach to solve some of their irritants. We then got the managers to use the information from the reports to make their life easier, and in some cases implemented reporting on mobile devices using low code platforms. The dream outcome of Sales Officers, proactively providing the latest estimates for the month along with additional measures to meet the goals, without any follow-up, touched the hearts of the Area Sales Managers. Our fortnightly doHow® sessions additionally served for reviewing the performance too, while enjoying the team activities. The doHow® principle of only accepting actions identified by the participant, within their own circle of influence, derived from their insights generated as they were challenged by pushing them out of their comfort zones, further ensured engagement and ownership.
Both the teams had introspected together and found a new inspiration to overcome the inherent monotony in the Siamese Twins of Business.
As usual, I am ending my blog with a quote by Himesh Reshammiya:
“I love challenges, as it breaks the monotony and takes me out of my comfort zone.”