Growth Acceleration Process
We talked about the structure and general organization of a growth team. Now let's talk about what the heck it is that they're supposed to be doing on a day to day basis, by leveraging the growth acceleration process, or gap we call it around our office. Well, so if you hear me say gap, and you're like, "What does that mean? "Are we talking a 90's era clothing company?" Just remind me and I'll say it's growth acceleration process. Okay. So let's talk about why you need a growth process. Alright? Why do you need a growth process? The fact is, and I think this is important and you probably have experienced this. Failure, isn't actually caused by bad ideas. I have made a lot of really dumb decisions in my career. Lots. Lots. I've never had a really bad decision bring down a company. Right? The nice thing about a bad decision is they rear themselves pretty quickly. And you're like, "Okay, that was bad. "Let's stop, let's do something different." Right? You can stop doing, you can pivot, yo...
u can do a lot of things. If you make a dumb decision, it's known. In my experience, failure happens when you try to implement too many good ideas. It is the attempt to implement too many good ideas that brings down great companies. Right? It is trying to do too much. It is a lack of focus. And I believe, if you're an entrepreneur, if you're an executive, you're successful, because, you have great perspective. You're successful because you're open minded. You're successful because you look around and you see all these astoundingly phenomenal ideas and you want to do it. And you're motivated. And you have the energy and the willingness to go out there and do it, but this also results in a devastating illness, that I do believe affects most founders and entrepreneurs and owners. And that's SOS. SOS, also known as shiny object syndrome. Shiny object syndrome. This is the thing that I have seen bring down more great leaders than just about anything else. The chasing of the next really cool thing. The chasing of the next great idea. Now, at the same time that leaders are dealing with this, right, the same time the growth leaders are dealing with shiny object syndrome, you've got them on one hand, flailing around trying to do a billion things at once. You have your team saying, "I get no respect." Right? They're quoting Rodney Dangerfield. I don't go any respect. Nobody is listening to my ideas. Right? I've got all of these great ideas, and I want to get it out there, and I wanna make it known because, one, they want to break through, right? They want to show that they have something to add. They want to have a voice. But often times, they care. And it's the people that care the most that bring forth all these ideas that we wind up squashing their ambitions because we're so busy chasing our own shiny objects, our own pet projects. So we've got both challenges here, that we're dealing with. So, what we need more than anything else is an objective process for sorting ideas so the good ones can rise to the top. Alright? We need an objective process that everybody agrees to, that everybody understands so that the good ideas can rise to the top. The okay ideas can linger. They can linger. They can linger around and need this so that no one gets their feelings hurt. That sounds very like, maybe, overly PC. But, I'll say it again. If you have people, you know, in your organization that care. If you have people in your organization that are bringing ideas to you, and they don't feel heard, they feel like those ideas just were thrown against a wall, they slid down, and disregarded, they're going to stop bringing ideas. And people don't leave companies. People leave leaders. People don't leave companies, they leave managers. They leave the people who they feel like don't care about them and their goals and their things. So one of the things that we need to make sure that we're doing as leaders, as managers, executive, owner. We need to make sure that we're listening to our people. That we are in-taking, you know, what they're saying. And if it's a great idea, then it has the opportunity to rise to the top. Right? We want to create this idea meritocracy, something I have heard Ray Dalio talking a lot about. He talked about it in his book Principles, right? A lot of people have read. This notion of an idea meritocracy. That it's not just the biggest, most successful person in the room whose ideas gets pushed forward. That the great ideas, no matter where they come from, truly have the ability to rise to the top. We don't just want to culture to do that, but we need systems, tools, processes in place to facilitate that. And that's what the growth acceleration process is all about. Alright? So, let's take a minute now and kind of break down the growth acceleration process and what it is. We see this as a six step process. The first step is focus. Alright? Focusing in on, "What are the goals that we're dealing with right now?" It is possible to have an exceptionally great idea that's time has not yet come. Right? In business we get this, right? Timing is everything. There were people who had phenomenally brilliant ideas that were a little bit early. There were people who had phenomenally brilliant ideas that were a little bit late. I don't know if it's true or not, but supposedly there was another person, you know, who invented the telephone but got to the patent office minutes behind Alexander Graham Bell. Again, I don't know if it's true or not, but that's happened. We've seen that. Right? We've seen that. So, we want to make sure that when we're looking at these different growth ideas, that we're applying appropriate focus based on the business goals that exist today, alright? So that's stage one, is focus. Stage two is analyze. Analyze. Why do we have an opportunity for growth? Think about that question for a little bit. Why would an opportunity for growth even exist? Would anybody look at Shaquille O'Neal and says, "That guy has an opportunity to grow. "In height." No, he's already giant. Okay? He's already an incredibly large man, right? Shaquille O'Neal is not a human growth opportunity. I on the other hand have tremendous opportunities for growth. I could add a foot to my height and it would be great. So, when we analyze the situation, right, why does a growth opportunity exist, it's usually because something's broken. It's because something isn't as optimized as it could be. So what we kind of need to do, is we need to swim in our muck a little bit. Be very honest, be very transparent and say, "Why does this opportunity exist?" And begin to reframe some of our inefficiencies, some of our inadequacies, some of our areas where we've fallen maybe a little bit short. Not as things that we should be embarrassed of, but instead analyze them as a scientist and say, "Why does this exist? "Why does this happen?" Next step is to brainstorm. To ideate. To look in the context of where we're focusing and in what's going on. What are all the different ways that we could, you know, approach this challenge? Right? And this is when we really want to open up the floodgates and involve the team. We'll talk about how we do that. Fourth is to prioritize. Getting a... Creating a laundry list of ideas is phenomenal. But if you never prioritize and distill down, you're living in shiny object syndrome land. You get too deep in that, there is no return. Then we run a test. We test it. Right? We don't ever want to say like, "I think this is going to work, so let's do it." Uh-uh. We gotta run a test, and then we report. We report. We're going to talk a lot about reporting. Reporting is important on so many levels. It's how we learn. But also, when you report, the reporting will very often inform what your next ares of focus should be. And that's why the circle continues. Okay? The reporting should encourage what you focus on next. So this is the six step growth acceleration process that we use, and what we're going to spend the rest of our time kinda doing in this segment, is breaking down each step. Focus. Analyze. Brainstorm. Prioritize. Test. And report. How does that happen within your organization?