Ready, Fire and …. Aim
… as opposed to most law firm decision-making, which rests on the ability not to make a decision.
The usual modus operandi:
“Ready, ready, ready, ready, aim, aim, aim …. and fire.”
The quote in this heading is from The Little Big Things by Tom Peters who in turn references Ross Perot. I can’t now find the page but it matters not. The point is that those making decisions in law firms and indeed in business generally, understandably don’t want to fail and want to make sure that they have got all their ducks in a row before they do something. But how often have you seen that sense of overkill completely wreck a project or bring about the unending creep which in turn brings about a sense of ‘going through the motions’. Most of the excitement of any launch that I was involved in was lost after the first meeting because what immediately followed that ….. was – another bloody meeting. And another; and so on.
The thing is most professional service firms constantly try to come up with new ideas and initiatives to keep the forward momentum that has been built up from the previous year but end up killing off any real enthusiasm for a project because they take so long to make a decision, act on their previous “To Do” list or simply over prepare.
Next time you are faced with a WOW project or a really cool idea, forget the “We must have another meeting phase” and just go and do it. Very often it is a case of making sure everyone has the right part of the job assigned to them or spreading the workload around or making sure that you have gone for the team work/inclusiveness mantra. Forget all of that and just …. “Ready …. Fire”. If you have to do some Aiming then that will come normally in the shape of the problems and issues that you encounter along the way and adjusting your position to take advantage of the opportunities or challenges ahead.
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