Achieve Greater Stability and Better Performance Through Quality Planning
Sometimes the shortest path between two points isn’t a direct line.
When we embark on projects, we often assume we will start at point A and proceed directly to Z. But as leaders, we need to prepare for the unknown, especially in highly uncertain environments. What if we don’t know what to do next, or worse yet, continue down the original path when the result won’t yield the desired value?
Once again, we can turn to the military for a proven technique. It’s called Sequelling, and it can help us evaluate various scenarios and surprises we could encounter along the path — and formulate the best response to each.
When you’re beginning your next project, ensure your team is prepared for various checkpoints, key milestones, or decision points in the process.
Ask your team to stop to consider, what are the different outcomes or next steps that could happen at each step. Each of the paths is called “sequels” and result in a course of action. There could be several potential sequels from a checkpoint. Start with these questions:
- What is the best-case scenario?
- What is the worst-case scenario?
- What is the realistic scenario?
- What is the best path forward from each?
For example, if one sequel is “the decision is rejected and the project is placed on hold,” then what could they do now to try and prevent that sequel from happening?
Implement this PowerPlay™, and you will find greater stability and better performance, no matter the environment.
- Have your team take an upcoming key decision point in their project and “sequel” its potential next steps.
- Have them review each path. Then determine what they could do to ensure a certain course of action, or reduce the risk/impact of an undesired course of action.
- Review their next steps and provide coaching on what they may have missed or how they should proceed.