Monday, 28 May 2018

Corporate Performance Learnings From 7 Running Rules

For about 48 weeks of each year I pretend to be runner.

There are another 2 weeks where I work on getting some form and finally, 2 weeks where I claim to be a runner and take on a marathon.

It was with this in mind that I eagerly clicked on an article claiming to be the 7 secrets of running efficiency.       

To think, after all these years I was on the edge of discovering the secrets of a sub 3 hour marathon where my rather rudimentary running style would morph in to effortless self-propelled forward momentum.

Digressing for a moment, in forging sporting and business careers, I have routinely used the leadership lessons of each in the pursuit of the other.

The players taking the field are sales and distribution, selectors are HR and collective performance is the sum total of individual contributions where each individual has their own reason for doing what they do and need to be understood and fostered.

Back to the article that was to be my key to easy running.

The reality is, it was nothing of the sort; it was much more.

The article talked about the need for both process and outcome goals. The process being the training and the outcome being the completion of an event in a particular time.

Or, in business speak, the process is the manufacturing and the outcome is distribution of the number of units needed to achieve profitability.

A further point was the need for consistency. The consistency of effort in training and preparation delivers results, just as it does in business endeavours.

The need to train at different speeds was also emphasised. How often do we as leaders, or for that matter, do our leaders forget this?

The old adage of “if it doesn’t hurt it doesn’t help” has long gone the way of history. In athletic and business endeavours, performance cannot be achieved or sustained if we are always training (working) at full pace. Athletically, we fall to physical injury while in business, mental exhaustion and worse can occur.

The need to schedule recovery time was also highlighted.

Athletes plan recovery time in to each month’s training schedule. Perhaps it is time we changed our thinking in our business lives.

In Australia we generally have 4 weeks annual leave for our recovery however no high performing athlete operates in such a way so does it makes sense our “Corporate Athletes” do?

The final point I will highlight is very important, the easiest to implement and the one most often overlooked.

It is “too celebrate achievements no matter how small”.

Athletically, out training partners and coaches are interested in our personal goals and objectives and openly encourage, acknowledge and celebrate these with us.

Unfortunately, in the workplace, only the Corporate goals and objectives tend to be celebrated.

Making this simple change could have a huge impact on performance, engagement and culture.

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