The Qantas-Emirates Partnership – constructing the Wagon Wheel

April 30, 2013

On March 31st, Qantas flight QF1 departed for London Heathrow, not via Singapore, its traditional hub, but via Dubai, home to Emirates, the world’s biggest international airline.

The partnership between the two airlines had become a reality.  Implementation Is All About Implications - The Wagon Wheel Way

You might be wondering about the connection between one of the most ancient and slowest forms of travel and the prodigious size, range and speed of the Airbus A380, the flagship of the two airlines.  If you are read on…….

The Wagon Wheel Way™

The Wagon Wheel Way™ is the world’s first Enterprise Operating System (WWWEOS) that maps the complete operational process from a) planning and b) execution to c) monitoring, measuring, adapting and d) revising.  The EOS uses the analogy of a wagon wheel where planning is likened to the wagon wheel’s construction; execution to the wagon wheel’s operation; monitoring, measuring, adapting to wagon wheel maintenance and lastly, revising to reconstructing the wheel.  And just in case you are thinking – what about communication – that’s the grease on the axle that keeps the wagon wheel rolling with the minimum of resistance – the good oil.

The WWWEOS was developed to demonstrate that the genesis of great execution begins the moment the planners sit down to plan.  What most planners ignore is that planning has a human dimension.  Integrated within the WWWEOS is a list of 36 barriers to execution.  In addition to each of these barriers being allocated to one of the four stages of the operational process, they are also divided into barriers of a “technical nature” and those that relate to  shortcomings of management in managing staff.  Whilst it should not come as a surprise to learn that 13 out of the 14 barriers relating to execution are people management issues, it may surprise that 4 out of the 13 barriers relating to planning also involve people.  Given that each barrier is placed in a specific sequence, it is a sobering thought that the first people related barrier is Barrier No.2 and so it follows that a failure to address this barrier will have an adverse impact on the subsequent quality of the execution.  The overall breakdown, incidentally, is 17 technical barriers and 19 people ones.  Thus technical and people management skills are equally important to the execution of the plan.

A wagon wheel was chosen as the model for the EOS, primarily because the construction of a wagon wheel mirrors the way in which plans should be developed.  The process is applicable to any kind of plan but really comes into its own when major and far reaching strategic plans are involved.  And make no mistake, the Qantas-Emirates alliance is BIG.  Alan Joyce, CEO of Qantas refers to the partnership as “one of the most strategic initiatives that we will ever do” and his opposite number at Emirates, Tim Clark, summed up the deal in one word – “seismic”.

Strategic planning – what we are going to do

Developing a strategic business plan involves three stages.  The first stage is to decide what you are going to do and the second is to decide how you are going to do it.  Most organisations spend too little time working on the second stage.  The third stage is an initial action plan based on “how we are going to do it” not on the first stage – “what we are going to do”.  “What we are going to do” is akin to constructing the hub of the wagon wheel.  No matter what specific processes or tools are used, the completed hub should consist of five components – a) the markets (customers) to be served, b) the products/services to be provided, c) the activities required to provide these products and services, d) the competitive strategy, and e) the competitive advantage – what is it that you do – currently or potentially – that is both different and better than your direct competitors.  From what I read, Qantas and Emirates have developed this – the first stage – to a high degree and if the execution of the current strategy meets both partners’ expectations, I think you will see the partnership extended to cover the trans-Pacific theatre as well.  It’s worth noting that Emirates already operates trans Atlantic services and has recently added an additional service from Milan to New York.

Strategic planning – how we are going to do it

Although it would have been driven by necessity, one of the most impressive features of the alliance so far has been the thoroughness with which the second stage has been tackled.  On the WWWEOS, after the hub has been built the spokes are inserted before the wooden wheel rim is attached to the spokes.  The spokes are the feature of the wagon wheel that makes it so appropriate as a planning analogy.  They both separate the second stage – “how we are going to do it” from the first but at the same time, the spokes demonstrate the connection between them.  The question that Qantas and Emirates management had to ask themselves countless times was – what is the impact of what we are going to do on every single function in each of the two airlines.  Joyce refers to “hundreds and hundreds of issues that had to be addressed”.  Within Qantas, ten workgroups were established to work on the commercial aspects of the alliance; the operational issues in moving the eastbound Qantas hub from Singapore to Dubai; flight operations; catering, baggage handling and cleaning services contracts, check-in processes and procedures, and crew hotels.  As part of the commercial aspects of the alliance, the two frequent flier programs had to be merged; fares, baggage allowances and credit terms aligned; approaches to corporate customers coordinated and complementary PR and media programs sorted.  On the IT side 22 different projects were tackled to bring the two airlines’ IT systems into sync with one another.  Action plans by the score will have been drawn up and activated as the roll-out of the partnership commences.

The final step in the construction of the wagon wheel is placing the metal band around the rim of the wheel.  The band represents the two key resources of any organisation – people and money and I think it’s fair to say that the strategic issues that have confronted Qantas on its eastbound international routes have been exacerbated by the series of industrial disputes between management and unions representing flight crews, cabin crews, engineers and baggage handlers.  This has resulted in low morale and a consequent drop off in customer service in all its various forms.  The Qantas brand has suffered as a result.

The human factor in planning

I am not sufficiently close to the action to be able to comment on these, currently, resolved disputes but one of the contributing factors has been poor communication by Qantas management with its employees.  Communication is the Central Nervous System of any organisation and if it’s damaged paralysis is the result.  Of course, I’m talking about communication between people not computers and as mentioned beforehand, four out of the 13 barriers to execution at the planning stage are people related.  Barrier No.2 flags the necessity for explaining to staff the rationale behind the planned strategy.  Everyone impacted by the new strategy and the subsequent changes needs to appreciate and understand the thought process behind it.  Not everyone will be won over but 90 – 95% will be, but if no convincing explanation is given, this percentage will drop dramatically with a consequent impact on execution.

Barrier No.5 refers to the necessity to involve those charged with the plan’s execution at the planning stage – particularly Stage 2 – how we are going to do it.  Because of the range and complexity of the issues to be resolved, it would appear that Qantas and Emirates have called on the specific expertise of many staff at all levels of management.

Barrier No.9 highlights the potential need to make changes to the organisational structure and such changes would appear to be fundamental to making the partnership work.  My colleague, Dr Andrew Humphries of SCCI, an acknowledged expert in strategic alliances and what makes them work, would recommend that both Qantas and Emirates appoint Partnership Relationship Managers to oversee both the execution and on-going operation of the alliance.

Finally Barrier No.13 draws attention to one of the most common management failings that, if left unresolved, will guarantee that the plan will never live up to the expectations of the planners.  In a great many cases, the work load associated with the new strategy is simply added to that associated with the current one and in these circumstances with not enough hours in the day, the focus stays on the urgent jobs rather than the important ones.  I’ve no doubt that much midnight oil has been burnt but the stakes – for Qantas particularly – are so high that it seems unlikely that this barrier would present too much of an obstacle.  The necessary resources would simply have been made available.

In summary, the wagon wheel has been constructed and the roll out has begun.  In the WWWEOS model, the emphasis on planning gives way to an emphasis on execution.  The five key requirements for great execution are a) organisational alignment, b) management of change, c) leadership at all levels, d) teams and teamwork and e) employee engagement – in that order.  In terms of customer service Emirates set a high standard and it’s imperative to the success of the partnership that Qantas employees do likewise.  Jan Carlzon, the former CEO of Scandinavian Airline Systems (SAS) in his book “Moments of Truth” explained the origin of the title as follows.  “Last year, each of our 10 million customers came into contact with approximately five SAS employees, and this contact lasted an average of 15 seconds each time.  Thus SAS is “created” 50 million times per year, 15 seconds at a time.  These 50 million “moments of truth” are the moments that ultimately determine whether SAS will succeed or fail as a company.”

Employee engagement is usually defined as the willingness of employees to undertake “greater discretionary effort”.  The endless opportunities that employees have to go beyond the call of duty to serve the passengers’ needs.  It’s what happens when staff feel good about the organisation they work for.  The starting point is a good plan and good planning and the Qantas – Emirates partnership seems to exemplify that.  So the wagon wheel has been built; it remains to be seen how effectively it operates.

The complete Wagon Wheel Way Enterprise Operating System is explained in my book  “Execution to Die For – the Manager’s Guide to Making It Happen.  The book is available in hard or soft copy from Amazon and in hard copy from my web site http://www.planstoreality.com.au.  You can download the first chapter free from my web site and see the reviews at http://www.executiontodiefor.com

 

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Communication – the good oil

April 15, 2013

Implementation Plan | Implementation Management | Strategy Implementation | Implementation Process

I’ve watched two documentaries on SBS recently  – the Dust Bowl and Hurricane Sandy – the Perfect Storm.  Ironically, in one case there was too much water whilst in the other, there wasn’t enough.  But what struck me once again are the communication skills of Americans.  This wasn’t Barack Obama or Martin Luther King or JFK speaking, these were ordinary Americans relating their experiences of these natural disasters – helped in one case by the actions of man.  What makes the average  American so eloquent compared to his or her Australian counterpart?  If you know why, I’d love to hear from you.

Last month in Victoria, we saw the resignation of Ted Baillieu who, even before the publication of the Nutt/Weston tapes and the resignation of Geoff Shaw, was languishing in the polls due, in part, to his inability to communicate with the electorate.  I’m not suggesting that what you say is more important than what you do but my experience is that employees complain more about the lack of communication from management than any other single factor.  This is not, perhaps, surprising as a manager’s ability to communicate is probably his or her most important asset.  In my book – “Execution to Die For” – I describe “Communication” as the Central Nervous System of any organisation.  Damage it and paralysis is the result.

Communication – the Nine Deadly Sins

Such is the overarching significance of Communication in The Wagon Wheel Way™ Enterprise Operating System, it does not feature directly in the Wheel’s construction (planning), operation (implementation) or maintenance (monitoring, measuring & adapting).  Instead it is depicted as the grease on the axle that allows the Wagon Wheel to roll with the minimum of resistance – hence Communication – the good oil.  Given that everyone recognises the significance of Communication, the question has to be raised as to why many organisations do it so poorly.  Here are the most common reasons.

a)     Management believes that the Plan will meet with resistance so the fewer people that know about it the better

b)     Communication takes up time – lots of it, particularly if you want to communicate effectively

c)      Senior management sees itself as the “thinkers” – the rest are the “doers”.  Why involve the “doers” in the “thinkers” role?

d)      The Planners limit their thinking to – “this is what we are going to do”.  They do not consider the implications of the Plan on each of the functions in the organisation, neither do they consider whether the Plan is practical and can be     adequately resourced

e)      Management withholds information on the basis of the “need to know”

f)      Management withholds information because information is power

g)     Management is afraid to initiate communication because this will invite questions to which management does not have an answer

h)     Management is fearful that the bulk of the contribution from staff will be negative so inviting communication is to invite criticism

i)      Management do not appreciate the contribution that the staff at the front line of the organisation can make, particularly to the second phase of planning – “how we are going to do it”.

I can guarantee that no one reading the above will be innocent of one or more of these communication crimes and everyone will have experienced the frustrations, anger and anxiety that such omissions in communication cause – whether deliberate or otherwise.

 

The above list of Communication offenses is taken directly from Section 2.6 of “Execution to Die For – the Manager’s Guide to Making It Happen.  This Section also discusses the two basic types of communication, what to communicate about and how some forms of communication are far more effective than others – if you want to achieve “execution to die for”.  The book is available in hard or soft copy from Amazon and in hard copy from my web site http://www.planstoreality.com.au


From Manager to Leader

April 15, 2013

 My Company has an assessment called “Towards Ten Thousand“.  It measures how effectively people in organisations work together.  People who work in teams.  Only we don’t use the word “teams”.  The generic term we use is “workgroups”.  The word “Team” is reserved for only the most highly effective workgroups and there are precious few of them.

I adopt a similar distinction between Managers and Leaders.  Leaders are superior managers.  Leaders are competent technically but what distinguishes them from mImplement | Plan Strategic | Implementing | Implementation plan | Implementation management | Strategy Implementation | Implementations | Implementation guide | Implementation processanagers is their ability to manage people.

Leadership can only be practiced when the manager is responsible for directing the activities of a workgroup.  Four star general and former President of the United States Dwight Eisenhower said that “leadership is the art of getting someone else to do what you want done because he wants to do it”.  So a condition of Leadership is the presence of a goal that the leader is incapable of achieving by him or herself.

Why Kevin Rudd failed in leadership bid

Take Kevin Rudd for example.

Whether you agree with his policies or not, he gives the appearance of being very competent technically.  He is knowledgeable, does his homework and speaks fluently.  But the reason for the coup that ousted him in June 2010 was his lack of leadership – his apparent inability to manage people.  Not only was the cabinet and caucus dysfunctional but the turnover in his staff who tired of his bullying and autocratic style was legendary.  Rudd was soundly defeated in Caucus by 71 votes to 31 when he challenged Julia Gillard for leadership of the ALP in February 2012 yet he remains the preferred leader in all the opinion polls.  The reason for this paradoxical situation can be explained by the difference between management and leadership.  The electorate see Kevin Rudd the manager whereas the Caucus see Kevin Rudd the leader.  The Caucus see Kevin Rudd as sorely lacking in the “art of getting someone else to do what you want done because he wants to do it”.

The Wagon Wheel Way Enterprise Operating System

In the Wagon Wheel Way™ Enterprise Operating System, Leadership is the third of the five key implementation requirements.  Preceding it are Organisational alignment and Management of Change.  Before Leadership can be practiced, everyone needs to understand where the organisation is now, what the overall goal is and the broad strategies for getting there.  Lastly, each staff member needs to understand the role that he or she will play in the journey.  Leadership qualities in the CEO are vital and if absent will lead to poor leadership at the workgroup level.  However, the presence of a CEO who is also a leader does not guarantee the reverse, particularly in a large organisation.  I worked for a company that had an exceptional CEO but his leadership example was not replicated by many of his most senior managers.

Rather than go into leadership theory, the chapter on Leadership in my book “Execution to Die For” focuses instead on Leadership behaviour.  It answers the question – what do leaders do that non-leaders do not?  The reality is that achieving execution to die for requires people at all levels of the organisation to be effective managers of people; being technically competent is simply not enough.

 

A list of Leadership behaviours may be found in Section 2.3 of “Execution to Die For – the Manager’s Guide to Making It Happen.  The book is available in hard or soft copy from Amazon and in hard copy from my web site http://www.planstoreality.com.au

 


Case study – Business Strategies have Use-by Dates

April 2, 2013

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Synopsis

 

This case study looks at the adverse impact of a changing market environment on a, hitherto, highly successful business strategy.  It also highlights the value of in depth customer feedback surveys that measure relative as well as absolute performance.

 

Background

 

The subject of this case study is a transport company that specialised in collecting containers from the port and delivering them to clients.  The Company used its own fleet of trucks and delivered containers within a 30 kms radius of its depot that was located a short distance from the wharf.  Although it had a number of direct customers, the majority of its business was with freight forwarding companies who out-sourced this stage of their operations to a transport specialist.  The freight forwarders would place orders with the transport company and indicate to which of their clients the containers were to be delivered.  The transport company would invoice the freight forwarders who in turn would invoice their clients.  I’ll refer to the transport company as Lightning Pty Ltd.

Over a period of seven years, three customer feedback surveys were conducted that not only measured customer satisfaction levels in Lightning’s performance but also measured them in relation to Lightning’s competitors.  Lightning’s business strategy was to offer customers an unrivalled quality of service for which their customers would be willing to pay a significant premium.

The litmus test of service quality in this industry is the ability of the wharf carrier to deliver containers to the customer’s premises on time.  Plus or minus 30 minutes from the stated time is the target.  Lightning’s management realised that this goal could only be met by making a very significant change to the traditional supply chain.  Instead of picking up containers directly from the wharf and delivering them to customers, Lightning negotiated with the stevedoring companies to pick up containers in the early hours of the morning which were then delivered to their own depot where they were unloaded and stored for a matter of hours before being uploaded and delivered to customers at a time of the customer’s choosing.  Whilst this involved adding extra steps to the supply chain, it avoided the interminable and unpredictable delays associated with the traditional modus operandi that made delivery to the final customer a lottery.  Lightning supported this operational master stroke with exemplary customer service and a sophisticated in-house IT system addressing the complete order fulfilment process from order placement to invoicing the customer.

Survey 1

The first survey confirmed the success of this strategy.  The overall customer satisfaction rating was 80% (any percentage over 79% is excellent) but, more importantly, customers regarded Lightning’s service as vastly superior to their competitors.  Respondents were asked to name the two closest competitors to Lightning.  If they were capable of doing this – and in this first survey there were many respondents who said that Lightning didn’t have any competitors – they were asked whether they currently used or had recently used the competitors in question.  If they had they were asked to state whether they considered Lightning to be “better”, “same” or “worse” than the competitor on the four key parameters of –

■          Quality of carrier service

■          Quality of customer support

■          Quality of IT systems

■          Value for money

A sentence of definition for each of the above was read out to the respondent to ensure consistency of interpretation.

If the percentage of “better” votes exceeded the sum of the “same” and “worse” votes – i.e. over 50% – Lightning was considered to have a competitive advantage.  In the first survey, the “better” percentages were 80%, 74%, 92% and 71% respectively – a remarkable performance.  The 71% for Value for Money was achieved despite the fact that 42% of respondents rated Lightning’s charges as more expensive than other wharf carriers.

Survey 2

The second survey was conducted four years later.  In the intervening period, Lightning had gone on line with their IT system so customers could log on and book “slots” for container deliveries.  A tracking system was also installed.  In addition, Lightning had also strengthened their business relationships with their customers’ decision-makers so that it was as strong as that between both parties’ operations staff.  As a consequence of these initiatives, Lightning’s Customer Satisfaction Index reached a heady 84%.

However, contrary to what one might have expected, their competitive position declined in each of the four attributes measured.  Quality of Service dropped 4 percentage points to 76%; Quality of Customer Support 6 percentage points to 68%; Quality of IT systems 2 percentage points to 90% and, most significantly, Value for Money 14 percentage points to 57%.  In addition, the percentage of Lightning’s customers who considered their charges as higher than other wharf carriers had risen from 42% to 68%.  So what had happened to cause this decline in Lightning’s competitive position?

First, it must be said that its competitive position was still very healthy.  After all, the percentage of “better” votes was still comfortably in excess of 50% for each of the four attributes.  Nevertheless, although there was a long way to go, their competitors had started to close the gap.  Across the four attributes the number of “same” votes had doubled to 24%.  The biggest decline had been in Value for Money.  I use a universal pricing formula where the price – P must equal or be less than the Customer’s Own Perceived Value – P =< COPV – if a customer is to continue to buy your product or service.  Lightning had continued to be aggressive in their pricing strategy and, consequently, a greater percentage of clients, who in Survey 1, felt that the service charges were less than the COPV, now thought that the service charges were equal to or even slightly greater than their perception of the value received.  However, Lightning management concluded that there was no need to modify what the feedback told them was a winning strategy.

Survey 3

The third survey was conducted a year on from the onset of the GFC.  The decrease in the overall number of containers entering the port led to further consequences that had a major impact on Lightning’s competitive position.

■          Being the port’s largest wharf carrier, the drop in container traffic had a disproportionate impact.  Lightning’s ability to offset the fall in overall demand  by increasing its market share was very limited.

■          The supply of wharf carrier capacity exceeded demand for the first time for many years

■          This led to greater price competition and lower market prices

■          Because carriers were not operating at full capacity, many were able to improve on their ability to deliver at the time their customers requested

■          The freight forwarders were also feeling the pinch as were many of their customers.  The final customer usually has a preference for containers to be delivered in the morning before 10.00am so they have the remainder of the  day to unstuff them, often with casual labour.  This understandable preference is not ideal from the wharf carrier’s perspective as it results in poor utilisation of capacity.  Having the largest fleet of vehicles and drivers,  this was a particular problem for Lightning.  Everyone wanted containers delivered between 7.00am and 10.00am and then deliveries dropped off sharply.  In the face of a fall in overall demand for Lightning’s services and poor utilisation of their resources, Lightning had no option but to reduce their resources to contain overheads but this action in turn reduced their ability to cope with peak demand and deliver containers at the time requested

■          Because of all these factors, the service gap between Lightning and its competitors closed significantly and one competitor, in particular, developed a strategy that out-flanked Lightning’s previously unassailable position in IT systems.  One of the shortcomings of Lightning’s on-line booking system was that it was developed in-house and was incompatible with the off-the-shelf  systems that freight forwarders were using.  This led to double entry by the freight forwarders’ operations staff.  When there was no viable alternative, this inconvenience was willingly accepted by Lightning’s clients but then one  of Lightning’s competitors offered an EDI (Electronic Data Interchange) solution that negated the need for double entry.

The combination of all the above factors did not impact on Lightning’s Customer Satisfaction Index that remained at a very healthy 83% but the number of respondents who regarded Lightning’s service charges as higher than their competitors rose another 10% to 78%, almost double that of the first survey.  However, the Company’s competitive position had markedly deteriorated.

Those respondents who considered the Quality of Carrier service to be “better” than the nominated competitors had declined 23% to 53%; Quality of Customer support was down to 55% from 68%.  Their major competitor’s adoption of direct data entry reduced the number of “better” votes from 90% to a still healthy 76%.  But by far the biggest and most serious fall was in Value for Money.  The 71% of respondents in Survey 1 who considered that Lightning offered “better” value for money had now declined to a lowly 26%.  37% of respondents now felt that Lightning’s Value for Money was “worse”.

Lightning’s strategy of offering a premium service at premium prices had reached its use-by date.  It was simply not tenable in the new market environment.  The lessons to be learned?

■          Economic forecasters may have been invented to make weather forecasters look good but there is one economic forecast that has withstood the test of  time and that is that when overall supply is greater than overall demand, prices will fall.  When market prices falls, some suppliers may still command a premium but it is a premium based on a lower price

■          In a capitalist economy, customer satisfaction levels are not necessarily the best indicator of the supplier’s performance.  It is the supplier’s relative performance that counts.  After all, if one supplier’s performance is bad but still better than its competitors, that supplier will still have a competitive advantage.

■          Like most markets that witness the entry of an innovative new player, the  wharf carrier market split into a number of different segments over time.  At  the time of the first survey, Lightning created a segment of its own.  Now there is a) premium segment occupied by Lightning and one competitor, b) an economy segment comprising those carriers that offer an acceptable  lower cost alternative for the rate conscious customer and c) the small boutique carriers who perform minor miracles on much smaller volumes.

■          All business strategies are founded on a number of assumptions.  Lightning’s  was no exception.

●          It was clear to the planners that wharf cartage was  hopelessly inefficient and that prospective clients would readily  welcome a new entrant that would challenge accepted practices and provide an unrivaled level of service.

●          Uncoupling the pick up of containers from the dock with their delivery to the customer was the key strategy that made that level of service possible.

●          Furthermore when you have zero market share,   general economic parameters are not that significant, especially in a market with many competitors and relatively low barriers to entry.

●          Freight forwarders proved willing to pay a premium for the service because if they calculated the total extra costs incurred when dealing with their existing carriers and the angst that late deliveries caused their clients, the premium was well worth it.

It is inevitable that over time some of the assumptions on which the original strategy was founded will no longer hold true.

●          Firstly, the competitive scene changes.  When a new entrant raises the bar of customer expectations, two things will happen.  Its success attracts other new entrants who believe they can emulate it and the best of the existing companies raise their own game.

●          Secondly, a business strategy founded on zero market share must be reviewed and modified as market share rises.  The old sporting adage that it’s harder to stay at the top than it is to get there is no less true in business.

●         Thirdly, my experience of the feedback from customer surveys leads me to believe that customer service in all its forms is the number one determinant of high satisfaction levels.  However, as high satisfaction levels attract new customers and the demands on the customer service providers increase, it becomes harder and harder for the previous standards to be maintained.

●         Furthermore, there is a natural tendency to focus one’s time on the new customers at the expense of the existing ones.

■          When reviewing a business strategy, one has to separate the external environment from the internal one.  One has no choice but to adapt to changes in the external environment.  Lightning had no choice but to adapt to the implications of the GFC on its business.  Pricing – an internal factor – was within their control as were their IT systems.

■          Finally when a business strategy is approaching its use-by date,  management has to be able to distinguish between “doing the right thing” and “doing things right”.  Is it the strategy itself that needs revision or do the problems lie in its execution?  Most organisations are very reluctant to change the former, particularly if it has proved successful over time but, if  indeed, that is where the problems lie, no amount of “doing things right” will improve the organisation’s performance.

There is no argument that strategies have a shorter lifespan these days.  The old practice that a three year strategy remained untouched until the three years were up is not tenable.  Strategies need to be reviewed on a regular basis or whenever an assumption is challenged by a change in the external environment.  As an engineering friend of mine pointed out, it’s easier to change direction when you are moving than it is when you are standing still.

Graham Haines

 

Graham Haines is the principal of Plans to Reality, a consultancy that specialises in the effective execution of business and strategic plans.  His client feedback surveys are used to establish the current reality prior to strategy formulation and to measure progress towards the resultant goals.  He is the author of a unique business book – “Execution to Die For – the Manager’s Guide to Making It Happen”.  He can be contacted via his web site ghaines@planstoreality.com.au   


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