Wide Cracks

In American English we often say something "slipped through the cracks," which usually connotes that we forgot or overlooked something minor.

But the cracks in a business are deep and wide, especially at this time of year.  They're crevasses, and they can swallow a whole boatload of good ideas.

Most of us are wrapping up our plan for next year, or the next three years.  And every bit of the plan that requires different activity - something new - is not only susceptible to the cracks, it will disappear down the cracks by default without two things:

  1. Someone to own it.
  2. Someone to hold the owner accountable.

I've seen entire strategic plans disappear without a whisper for want of these two components.

It's not that we're lazy, dumb or malicious.  It's that we're human, so we do what we do, and we do what we know... unless someone holds us to something new.

Hey, it's your job to make sure we're not giving deep discounts to small OEM customers in 2015.  And I'm going to check in with you monthly to see how we're doing and what help you need.

It's up to you to get our channel partners trained on our new software before Q3.  Please track their progress so you and I can talk regularly about what more we need to do.

You'll have to prioritize commercial clients so they get first dibs on our best resources.  For the first quarter of the year, make sure you flag any situations that concern you, and we'll talk about how to handle it.

Maybe it feels unfortunate that the brilliance of our leadership (where do we need to go?) is vulnerable to the competence of our management (are we getting there?).  But there's a reason you're sipping from a mug labeled "World's Best Boss."