By Karen Huffaker
While sitting in a Friday afternoon Roundtable discussion recently, our C-Suite leader gave us all a challenge:
“Think about the little things – the things that you can do or impact by raising the bar, and striving not for giant feats, but the smaller things you can perfect within your sphere.”
After taking this to heart, I began my own self-examination and determined this might be a good time take on the challenge. Consider these:
- Challenge what you do. How can you improve? Can you refine, add or skip a step, increase volume, shorten time lines, decrease tasks?
- Challenge yourself – your approach. Why do you do it this way? Is there a better approach?
- Challenge others. Why do we do this? Is it effective, or could our time and resources be better spent elsewhere?
But don’t stop there. Ask more questions. I once had a director whose mantra one year was to ask more questions. Throughout the year we were constantly reminded to ask more questions. This became more critical during economic downturns. We knew the right questions to ask like is it really needed or a nice-to-have, what happens if we don’t do it, is there another option, another vendor? Leadership decisions were made based on the challenging questions that we raised, and the (sometimes surprising) answers we received.
Get more information. With the great wealth of information at our fingertips today, we have every opportunity to educate ourselves in matter of seconds. Then gain insights from the experience of others and seek their advice.
Information is knowledge, knowledge is power as the saying goes. Shopping for cars and computers – – I wouldn’t dare shop for either without studying up on my options. How much more so in our ever-so-fast changing industry? Last week’s dazzling technology and bright ideas will be outdated and obsolete in a short time. Keep current and keep an eye out on the next big thing.
And all that you’ve gained throughout the process can be used to facilitate change. You can influence outcomes and make a significant contribution by just starting with something small!
Will you take the challenge?