UC Strategy – Habit #2, Begin with the End in Mind

So to dovetail into Habit #1, Be Proactive, you need to know where you are going or you will never be able to be strategic – you will spend all day every day putting out fires and dealing with what comes up never moving toward an overall UC Strategy. If you do end up accomplishing something strategic, it will have been because of luck and not because of pre-planning.

The Cheshire Cat said it best when he was talking with Alice in Wonderland.

ALICE: “Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”

CHESHIRE CAT: “That depends a good deal on where you want to get to.”

ALICE: “I don’t care much where – “

CHESHIRE CAT: “Then it doesn’t matter which way you go.”

Successful executives spend 15-25% of their time working on UC Strategy. That way they can BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND on each of their initiatives. 20% means that each week, a successful IT manager, CMIO, CIO, CTO would spend an entire day working on strategic projects. If you are spending only two or three hours a week or less on UC Strategy, you will never end up where you want to go in your department or your career.

The most successful company cultures in the world, like EPIC, KLAS, and Zappos share an interesting thing in common. Like many companies they have a mission statement. The difference in these world-class companies is that every person from the top executives down to the part-time employees can not only repeat the mission statement, but they can also clearly articulate their role in that mission. Imagine the power of having every employee be able to say “Our Company’s mission is … and I can affect that mission by …” that is true power. I have encouraged IT departments to start with their own group. Develop a department mission statement and then make sure every teammate in that department can tell what the mission of the department is and how they drive that mission forward. This is truly beginning with the end in mind.

Beginning With The End In Mind is a change in mindset. It is a process of embracing the difference between what you must do every day and what you should do every day. There are many things we should do – lose weight, take our significant other on a vacation, spend more time with our kids, plan the next year’s strategic goals, set our department KPI’s, finish that expense report, etc. – but until these SHOULD’s become MUST’s they aren’t ever going to get done. Once we change our SHOULD’s to MUST’s they happen. By knowing where we are going, from the 50,000 foot perspective, we can more easily frame how we move things from the should list to the must list.  Once we have defined the End, the vision of where we really want to go, we can know on a quarterly, monthly, weekly, and daily basis what our MUST DO items are because they fit into that Strategic Vision. UC Strategy = success.

Join us for a 20 minute focus webinar on this topic Wednesday, March 26th, 8 AM Pacific. Register here.

Doug Tolley (15 Blog Posts)

Doug Tolley is the Business Development Director for LVM, Inc. He has 20 years of experience in Business Development, Sales and Consulting, and Project Management in a wide variety of businesses with a primary emphasis on IT.