Operating rhythm

The silver bullet for business success

Ok, so I have this love/hate relationship with routine. For years I?ve been bouncing between having a routine and being spontaneous. I discover a way to do a task efficiently and follow the process for a couple of months before getting irritated by the lack of variety and changing it up, delaying it, or, stopping doing it all together.


You see, routine, to me, equals boring and I?m not boring, I?m fun?well at least I aspire to be! So the idea of doing the same thing, the same way, with the same outcomes over and over has me feeling quite suffocated. That kind of suffocation I imagine you?d feel when a massive python has itself wrapped around you and gradually tightens its grip until all of the air is squeezed from your lungs.


Yet being spontaneous – having to come up with new, different, exciting ways of doing things all the time is exhausting and a really inefficient way of running a business.


You see my dilemma! And as much as I love the argument with myself each month, about how I should be working, I would rather find a solution that decreases my anxiety and gives me the time to be spontaneous elsewhere!


If you?re like me, then I think you?ll find value in knowing that you don?t need routine to run a successful business or team. What you do need though is rhythm, specifically operating rhythm. You need to have a clear idea of why your team exists, what you?re wanting it to achieve and how you?d like it to operate. A good operating rhythm will give clarity to your staff about what they should be doing and what success looks like for them (e.g. key performance indicators).


Operating rhythm is a term used in the world of Six Sigma, which is a set of management techniques intended to improve business processes. And rather than being a routine or a plan, operating rhythm is a state or a way of working. The intention of an operating rhythm is ?to ensure smooth, seamless operations enabled by timely and effective communication?. ?Sounds awesome doesn?t it!


The key to developing a great operating rhythm is consistency. You don?t need to do the same thing at the same time and in the same way. You just need to do it every week/month/quarter (depending on the task), in whatever way successfully delivers the outcome. Whether you do it in the first week or the third – as long as the objectives are achieved it shouldn?t really matter.


The best thing about developing an operating rhythm in your business is that it?s a great way to empower your people and get them to take more responsibility for the day-to-day running of your business. Which will free up your time to work ON the business instead of IN it.


Need help designing your operating rhythm? Give me a call.


Shelley Flett is a passionate leader with a keen focus on creating efficient and sustainable team environments through adaptable leadership.She is a Leadership Coach, Trainer, Facilitator, Mentor and Speaker who ignites vision and purpose in those she works with.

If you?d like to know more about her latest program on leading leaders please drop her an email shelley@shelleyflett.com.

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