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Most organizations routinely ask their people, "What have you accomplished this past year?" This question may be posed either to individuals or to units within the organization.
The responses generally fall into one of two categories. They are either weighted around activities or they are weighted around results.
In the first case the response is a lengthy listing of initiatives launched and actions undertaken. In the second case the listing is weighted around milestones reached, things accomplished, and outcomes attained.
While both activities and accomplishments are important in any organization, it's outcomes, not actions and activity that are most important. The vital issue is not, "What things did we do?" but "What results did we get?"
In my workshops on leadership and management, I regularly emphasize the importance of creating a results-oriented culture. I emphasize that activity, no matter how impressive or how well done, has little meaning if it fails to achieve appropriate results.
Ultimately management and leadership are both charged with getting results — nothing less. Thus, exceptional managers and leaders always surround themselves with a results-oriented organization. Within such organizations everyone recognizes that effort and good intentions are no substitute for results.
Results-oriented organizations have eight vital characteristics which they share in common:
Based on these eight principles, I've developed a simple instrument for evaluating whether your organization is poised to be a results-oriented culture. The instrument builds around eight statements, which I've listed below. As you look through these statements, respond to each one with the appropriate answer from this list: Never, Rarely, Occasionally, Usually, Always.
Your response to each statement should be either Usually or Always. Any other response indicates a priority area in which work must be done to position your organization for exceptional results.
© 2015, Dr. Mike Armour