“Diamonds are chunks of coal that stuck to their job”
– Gabriel Ross Perot
What is the key to successfully achieving your strategy and goals for this year? Just stick to it! George Patton famously said that “A good plan, violently executed now, is better than a perfect plan next week.” This sentiment is echoed in Lee Colan’s “quick-read” book titled “Sticking to It: The Art of Adherence”, where Colan persuasively argues that one’s ability to stick with a strategy is a significantly more important predictor of success than the strategy itself. What Colan calls “Adherence” is made up of three components – each is essential and has a multiplying effect:

  • Focus – A clearly defined purpose and a simple plan that involves your team and allows you to say “no” to activities that don’t contribute to the strategy.
  • Competence – Existence of SMART goals for you and your team with effective systems in place to accomplish and track achievement of those goals.
  • Passion – Team members understand their roles and potential rewards. Furthermore, they are engaged through shared values and the respect you demonstrate in day-to-day actions.

If any of these is lacking, it will significantly diminish your likelihood of success. Of course, as you are working toward accomplishing your goals you will undoubtedly have problems to solve along the way. While you’ll need to overcome those daily challenges with effective processes, you still need to have the building blocks of Focus, Competence and Passion as your foundation.
At under 50 pages, Lee Colan’s book is practical, insightful and to the point. It includes an assessment and practical steps you can take for building adherence on your team immediately. You can learn more and find a copy of Colan’s book “Sticking to It: The Art of Adherence”