President’s Opening Address
We need to be in the RED!
Robust, Effective and Disciplined! Fellow toastmasters as we cross over to the new term, we need to re-think and re-invent the way we do things. Einstein once said ‘madness is doing the same things over and over again but expecting a different result.”
We are definitely not mad, we are sane! Tonight my president’s opening address is not an inspirational speech, neither is it a motivational one. It is my brief introduction to how our club can achieve its membership growth targets using the 4 Disciplines of Execution by McChesney, Covey and Huling.
At the start of every new term, we get excited we set goals and we put in efforts to invite guests to our chapter meetings. Somehow, in our day to day busyness, we lose track of the importance of pipeline and process management, leaving our membership growth strategies, ineffective because of the missing link – execution.
The 4 Disciplines of Execution will ensure we conscientiously keep our eyes on our goals. Here are the 4 Disciplines in the context of membership growth.
1st Discipline – Focus on our WIG (Wildly Important Goal).
A wildly important goal is a goal that can make all the difference. This is one area where change will have the greatest impact. I have shared on a few occasions the importance of brining in new members and I shall not go into that. An example of recruitment goal would be – To recruit 10 new members by 31st December 2016.
2nd Discipline – Act on the Lead Measures.
What are lead measures? Lead measures tell us if we are likely to achieve our goal. Example, while you can’t control how often your car breaks down on the road (a lag measure) you can certainly control how often your car receives routine maintenance. (a lead measure). And the more you act on the lead measure, the more likely you are to avoid that roadside breakdown.
How does that apply to membership growth? Whilst we can’t control whether or not guests will join us eventually as members, what we can control are the number of guests who attend our chapter meetings and what stage are they at in the decision making process. Are they attending our meetings for the 1st or subsequent time? Has the benefits of membership been explained? Have their concerns been addressed? Manage and tick off each stage of the process.
In our discussions regarding membership growth, let us constantly engage one another on monitoring and measuring the lead measures.
3rd Discipline – Keep A Compelling Scoreboard.
We need to ensure everyone knows the score at all times. How close are we to our goal? Its important because people get engaged when they know the score! When team members themselves are keeping score, they truly understand the connection between their performance and reaching their goal, and this changes the level at which they play. When everyone on the team can see the score, the level of play rises, not only because they can see what’s working and what adjustments are needed, but also because they now want to win.
4th Discipline – Create a Cadence of Accountability
Disciplines 1,2 and 3 are to set up the game, but until you apply Discipline 4, your team isn’t in the game. This is the discipline that brings team members all together. It is recommended that the team meets at least weekly for the WIG session with a set agenda and establish a weekly rhythm of accountability. Here’s the 3 part agenda for a WIG session:
- Account: Report on commitments
“I committed to inviting 5 friends to our chapter meetings. I did and this was what I learnt…”
- Review the scoreboard: Learn from successes and failures
“Our lag measure is green, but we’ve got a challenge with one of our lead measures that just fell to yellow. Here’s what happened…”
- Plan: Clear the path and make new commitments.
“I’ll meet with the 3 guest whom I have invited and address the concerns that they have”
To prepare for the meeting, every team member thinks about the same question: “What are the one or two most important things I can do this week to impact the lead measures?”
When everyone takes ownership towards his or her impact and contribution towards the lead measures, the probability of achieving the lag increases dramatically.
I hope we can adopt the 4 disciplines of execution as we cross over to the new term, because for things to change, we have to change and adopting a different approach will bring in the transformation for our club.
Back to you toastmasters of the evening.