Have you ever struggled with how to do something? You knew what to do, but you just couldn’t figure out how to do it. There is a big distinction between what and how. Have you ever asked for advice on how to do something, and you just got more what?
The difference between what and how are crucial and often overlooked. Its often easy to determine what needs to be done, it’s usually not as clear how to do it. Strategies are easy to come by. The strategy is the “what.” How to execute the strategy is where we often get stuck.
In the book “Four Disciplines of Execution” the authors outline four “disciplines” for helping companies successfully implement high-level strategies. These strategies close the gap between what and how and I believe are applicable to every ministry context.
If you have something important you want to accomplish and you have many competing obligations and distractions pulling at your time, energy and willpower these four disciplines can help. Below is a summary of the 4DX framework. If you find this summary helpful you should consider purchasing the book.
The authors explain, “The more you try to do, the less you actually accomplish.” They go on to elaborate execution should be aimed at a smaller number of Wildly Important Goals, abbreviated WIGS. By limiting your goals you focus your energy with a higher intensity to generate real results.
That means you should identify a small number of ambitious outcomes to purse with an inordinate amount of your time and energy.
Once you have identified a WIG, you need to measure your success. There are two types of metrics for this.
If you want to increase the number of volunteers you have in your ministry from 5 to 10. What steps, (lead Measures) must you take? Some examples,
These steps are examples of lead measures.
“People play differently when they’re keeping score.” If you want to increase your team’s engagement toward your WIG, it’s important that they have a public place to record and track their lead measures.
The scoreboard creates a sense of competition that drives your team to focus on actions that matter. It serves as a source of motivation. As soon as you begin seeing success it will drive you and your team to perform even better.
The final step to help maintain focus on the Lead Measures is to put in place a rhythm of regular meetings of any team that owns a wildly important goal (WIG).
During these short meetings the team members must confront their scoreboard, commit to specific actions to improve the score before the next meeting, and describe what happened with the commitments they made in the last meeting.
This meeting must be regular for its effect to be felt by the team. The authors argue that this discipline is where “execution really happens.”
Each person on the team would:
The 4DX framework is based on the fundamental premise that execution is more difficult than strategizing. Said another way, the HOW is more difficult than the WHAT.
I have received some amazing results by implementing the 4DX model. I’ve:
The regularity of my successes increased dramatically. I reached more goals faster than ever before.
In what area could you implement the 4DX model today?
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