What if we had to do it today? What if we had to hire that person today? What if we had to sell that item today? What if we had to finish that project today?
What would you do? What would you do differently to achieve those things today?
Ask yourself this question about your most important priority and see where it takes you, and then propose this question to your team.
What if we had to do it today?
This mindset is all about closing the Importance Gap to create momentum in a team or yourself. Too often we get stuck in one paradigm and avoid seeking out creative new solutions to the obstacles in our way. But this question can give you a brand new focus. It puts the spotlight on a single outcome, with a clear deadline, and then not only defines the behaviors to get there but puts them into action immediately.
At its core, Gapology is all about creating action. The biggest problem with having a Performance Gap in your team, or yourself, is the fact that it is restricting your ability to take the action necessary to deliver the expectations set for your organization. Knowledge Gaps prevent growth in a team’s understanding and ability to perform at its highest levels. Importance Gaps prevent a team from connecting with the things that truly matter. And Action Gaps create stagnancy and apathy in a team’s culture.
Getting bogged down in the “real world” is a real problem. Internal busy work that consumes a team’s focus pulls importance away from the things that matter, and it is up to us as leaders to quickly identify those things to minimize them and refocus everyone on the top priorities. Sure, we all have some of this busy work on our plates, but we need to make certain that it doesn't crowd out the highly important things, and an exercise like posing this question to our team, or ourselves, can shift our paradigm to immediately go after the top goals.
Leveraging your knowledge in Gapology gives you the ability to create sustainable action and build momentum in your team, and it can shift this view of your efforts in significant ways. Due to its systematic approach to leadership, you can easily break down any lack of execution to quickly identify and then close any Performance Gaps.
Here are some new ways to look at creating focus and momentum using Gapology. Apply these questions to your top objective or one that has been giving you the most trouble.
What if we had to close the Knowledge Gap today?
How would you train your team today?
What would your teaching, coaching, and mentoring process look like?
Where is your team lacking in talent? What moves would you make today?
What if you had to close the Importance Gap today?
How would you clarify expectations with your team? What behaviors and results would you expect to see delivered today?
How would you shift your communication to ensure understanding, belief, and immediate action from your team?
How would you align your priorities to deliver the most important elements today?
What if you had to close the Action Gap today?
How would you create accountability? What measurements or metrics would need to be put in place?
How would you ensure the commitment is created to delivering the expectations today? What would you look for in the commitment level of each individual on your team? How would you course-correct if necessary?
What would you do differently to create the culture of action needed to build and sustain the momentum?
What if we had to do it today?
Ask your team, and yourself, this powerful question for your most important objective, the one that truly matters in delivering your purpose. Save it for that objective. Avoid using it on things that don’t directly deliver your purpose, as it may get watered down and lose its impact. This is a tremendously powerful tool to focus the team, so make it matter.
Also, be supportive in your leadership with this. Just asking the question may bring concern or fear into the team, so your supportive coaching is imperative to leverage to create energy to propel the team forward. This exercise is not designed to scare teams into action, but rather to rally them around a singular objective and deliver virtually instantaneous results that truly matter.