Using their tools and equipment, they are masters at building projects. This mastery is developed through years of practice.
When a contractor is just starting out and the projects are small, the focus on tasks and tools consumes nearly every minute of the leader’s day. All other elements of the pyramid are present and necessary, but a lot less intentionally proactive time is spent on them.
As the contracting business and size of projects grow, it becomes more important to focus on standardizing processes and operating rhythms to keep everyone in sync. As this starts to consume more leadership time, it is critical to have good people in place that are relentlessly focused on task execution.
As the contracting business and size of projects continue to scale, the leadership at the highest levels must focus nearly all their time on the foundation of the pyramid: the people, path, and principles.
“As to methods, there may be a million and then some, but principles are few. The man who grasps principles can successfully select his own methods. The man who tries methods, ignoring principles, is sure to have trouble.”
Resources Applicable to Each Level:
Practice: From learning a task through being competent - being able to perform that task consistently to the standard - and toward mastery, where you are making improvements to the task and teaching others.
- The Little Book of Talent: 52 Tips for Improving Your Skills
- Geoff Colvin - Dramatic Test Improvement (3 Min Video)
- Improving Outcomes by Deliberate Practice in Onboarding for a Role (2 Min Video)
Process (System, Value Stream, Workflow, etc.): The sequencing, timing, and interrelationships between all the roles, tasks, and decisions required to consistently deliver value to the customer.
- Tom Foster describes the basic building blocks of an organization, including the layer that designs the system based on Stratified Systems Theory (SST) developed by Elliott Jaques. (5 min video as part of a longer playlist)
- Learning to See: Value Stream Mapping to Add Value and Eliminate Waste (MUDA)
- Value Stream Mapping: How to Visualize Work and Align Leadership for Organizational Transformation
- Current State Metrics Process Map and Analysis (16 min video)
Path & Plan: Choosing where to play and how to win.
- A Plan is Not a Strategy by Roger Martin (9 min video)
- The Big Lie of Strategic Planning (6 page article)
- The Five Strategic Choices (4 min video)
- The Successful Business Plan (Secrets & Strategies Book / Rhonda Abrams)
- Objectives and Key Results (OKRs)
- The Four Disciplines of Execution (6 min video intro + full playlist)
Principles: The foundation that strategies, plans, processes, tasks, and decisions are based on.
- Ray Dalio's best-selling book, "Principles," is now an animated ultra mini-series adventure: Principles for Success in 8 animated, ultra mini-series, episodes
- Principles - summary table (PDF)
People and Purpose: The ultimate foundation of everything.
- The Talent Code and The Culture Code (Books by Dan Coyle)
- The Five Dysfunctions of a Team (Model, Book, Assessment, and Workbook by Patrick Lencioni)
- Vivid Vision (9 min video and book) by Cameron Herold
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