When you focus on feelings, you will get moved all over the map. Feelings, happiness, satisfaction ratings can change on a daily, hourly or minute-by-minute basis.
What matters for leaders is results – in both the short and long-terms. Sometimes, what you do will engender ill feelings, especially amongst those who are highly opposed to the change or act as solo “heroes” in an organisation, even when it’s absolutely in their best interests. Just ask anyone who has undergone drastic medical treatment to solve a problem whether they “felt” great while going through it.
In my consulting and facilitating, I may work with a very large and diverse group who all have very differing feelings about something we believe or do together. Although I will attend to these in an informed manner, the important thing for me is that we get agreed direction and action.
That happened with a recent strategy session I ran for the Board of one organisation. The Board and senior staff needed to quickly sort out their strategic direction for 2018. Within a very brief – quick and decisive – process, we agreed the principle strategic purpose and areas of play and competition for the board, with agreement on the nature of the products to focus on and the #1 Strategic Goal for the CEO, staff and board for the coming several months up to a year.
In some organisations, this process takes a year or more. We did it fast!
The results will enable the organisation and the CEO to start executing immediately and aligning products, services and resources with their overall strategic purpose.
But there were differing “feelings” in terms of feedback and leftover needs from our work together. The fact is, I was moving fast with them, nor could we be expected in a quick process to evaluate every single position and nuance for the organisation – that will take time. At that this level, feelings can also be dealt with over the longer term. The most important thing is that we all got the primary results we were after – an excited, motivated and cooperative team looking to take this organisation to a whole new level of success. Those “feelings” were far more important than how they felt about the time itself.
Feelings may be a great sales tool, but they’re not a great indicator of strategic importance and success. Motivations and individual understandings and behaviours and more should all be attended to, but it’s our results that really matter.
Feelings are ephemeral. Great results last.
© 2018 Peter J. McLean www.petermclean.co