This is an excerpt from The Simple Leader: Personal and Professional Leadership at the Nexus of Lean and Zen
My success, part of it certainly,
is that I have focused in on a few things.
– Bill Gates
Once you have a hoshin plan detailing what your organization’s priorities are, it’s time to face the reality of all the other projects you and your group are currently working on. This is often a “come-to-Jesus” time when organizational politics can reach a fever pitch, as project owners pitch why their projects, perhaps their raison d’être, deserve survival. It is also a great time to demonstrate the power of the hoshin plan as well as your leadership commitment to a new, defined path forward.
Compile a list of all current projects and significant activities. (This in itself will probably be an eye-opening experience.) Then, as a team, map that list against your principles, mission, why?, and hoshin plan. The hoshin plan will not list all the company’s appropriate or valuable projects, but it should contain the highest- priority objectives. All other projects must align to the principles, why?, and mission, and support and not conflict with the plan.
Project managers and teams on projects that no longer align with the organization’s future path should not be fearful. If done correctly, the projects on the hoshin plan will stretch the organization and need experienced project managers and teams to work on them. Think about how much easier your leadership role will be when all projects are identified and aligned with a hoshin plan that the organization owns and supports, not to mention the resources that are being saved or better invested.
Once again, consider doing the same for you personally. What are you working on that isn’t giving you value or contributing to your own plan? Eliminating the nonessentials in your life will give you more time and focus to create something you want even more.