Are you ready for what lies ahead? At times like these, the natural reaction is to focus on the day or week ahead. When we are not sure what the future looks like, at least we can plan for today and the day after. While this is comforting, there will be a future. As Andy Grove said,
“All crises end” and “The Greatest danger is in standing still.”
How do We GET READY?
The first thing we need to do is sketch out a directional vision. It is pointless providing a highly detailed and precise vision. We know it will be wrong. Instead we need to paint the picture of a future we would like to create. In the current situation, that could be how we will navigate the current crisis and take advantage of the eventual economic recovery. The vision should be clear enough to know if we are making progress towards it and not going in the opposite direction.
Now we have a directional vision, the next question is what will have to happen to get there? This is an important question. Our natural tendency is to fall back on what we know and conclude it isn’t possible. By asking what has to happen, we open up new possibilities. If we keep asking that question we sketch out a path to our directional vision. This becomes our strategy.
Moving in the right direction
If we break that down into small manageable steps we now have a path of action. It ties the actions we are taking today and tomorrow towards achieving our desired future state. This may start to sound simple but the path is going to be anything but. It certainly won’t be a straight line. The key is keeping the directional future in front of us and continually adapting our actions to move us closer. As we learn more the path will become clearer.
The GOST planning framework, created a by Rich Horvath, is a perfect tool for managing the process I’ve described above. It stands for Goals, Objectives, Strategies, Tactics. Rich’s framework ties these elements together helping you maintain a strong connection between your directional vision and the tangible actions required to get there.
Coming back to Andy Grove’s quote about standing still, he didn’t mean run around like a headless chicken. If you keep your vision in front of you and take intentional action, you will be ready and come out of this in better shape.
We teach how to manage and lead in times of uncertainty and how to use the GOST model in our new online leadership program. Registration is open and you can learn more here. I’ll leave you with another Andy Grove quote.
“There are so many people working so hard and achieving so little.”