29 December 2006

Will it work for you?

You are surrounded by new ideas which people are keen to deliver into your business. New information systems, new business processes, new approaches to training, new concepts in brand development. Wherever you look, ideas are being thrust at you to consider.

How do you go about deciding which of these ideas will work for you and how do you go about prioritising them?

When you are looking at the next idea which is guaranteed to deliver huge value to your organisation, it is worth taking a few moments to test how it is going to support the core of your business. My simple test is to start by asking what’s really important to your organisation? Your list might look something like this:

• Mission – what is it that you are trying to do?
• Your competitiveness – what is your edge and how can you improve further?
• Execution – how effective are you at delivering what you want?
• Change – how good are you at adapting to change?

The shiny new idea is important only so far as it is able to support your business improve its performance against these dimensions (or the dimensions that you and your colleagues believe are fundamental to your success). If the idea doesn't contribute to one or more of these areas then file it in the interesting but not not mandatory box in your office (the waste bin) and get on with your life. The ideas which seem to offer the best payback against one or more of these areas need to be considered in more detail.

Change for change's sake is rarely a good idea.

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