“And hopefully, next quarter, we will see some improvement in this chart.” How many times have we sat through a presentation in which similar words were spoken? “Hopefully” things will turn around. I recently attended such a presentation. The same charts were shown that we had seen over and over again. For quite some time the charts had been telling the same, sad story. The trends were always in the same (wrong) direction.
Hope is good to have, but it does not change an organization’s direction. The expression, “Nothing changes until something changes,” is not just an expression. Until real change takes place, the charts will continue to trend in the same direction. Hope will not change an organization’s direction.
When I worked in manufacturing, upper management decided that our recordable injuries were too high. We were given a goal to cut the number of recordable injuries in half. When presented with the goal, I asked what seemed to me to be the obvious question, “Where’s the plan?” I found out that we had no plan, just a goal. We tried to reduce the number of recordable injuries the only way we knew how – we cheated. We cut corners continually as we tried to reduce the number of people who were reportedly hurt on the job. We did not reduce the number who were hurt. Eventually, a time-tested, proven plan for reducing recordable injuries was rolled out, and we did actually reduce the number of people hurt on the job.
Stop looking at the same charts telling the same sad story. Demand plans be developed to affect change. Be the agent of change your organization needs. Nothing changes until something changes.