Operational Excellence

Execution Excellence

Execution excellence is all about consistently delivering planned outcomes on time making best use of available resources. It can be achieved through a set of operating principles, practices, and capabilities.

Execution excellence is all about delivering outcomes irrespective of the circumstances. It’s easier to deliver results when everything is in a favorable state. For example, when there are plenty of buffers, low expectations from stakeholders and customers, less or no competition, etc. The real test of execution excellence for managers is when some of the factors change or behave differently. 

In my view, the following play a vital role in execution excellence:

  • ability to look at the current state of affairs without any ‘blurred’ or ‘colored’ vision
  • ability to acknowledge and respond to changes in the environment
  • ability to look at various failure modes and risks
  • having a plan to face external or internal challenges effectively and on time
  • ability to see a failure early in the ‘failure lifecycle’ and take the right path as quickly as possible
  • making systems more robust, reliable, and resilient while keeping them agile
  • it’s good to have many ideas, but what determines success is implementation; avoid ‘diarrhea of ideas and constipation of actions’ trap

The other key factor in execution excellence is timely decisions and actions. The value and effectiveness of decisions and actions are dependent on time. Some of these decisions and actions lose value as time passes. At times have a negative impact, if not done on time. 

I have come across numerous situations where simple decisions/actions took ages to execute. Some of them derailed the entire strategy impacting organizational performance, employees’ careers, and damaging the brand perception.