Move | Patty Azzarello

Summary of: Move: How Decisive Leaders Execute Strategy Despite Obstacles, Setbacks, and Stalls
By: Patty Azzarello


In the book ‘Move: How Decisive Leaders Execute Strategy Despite Obstacles, Setbacks, and Stalls’, author Patty Azzarello shares valuable insights into overcoming challenges in executing strategy for both personal and professional development. By employing the MOVE model – Middle, Organization, Valor, and Everyone – you will learn to tackle the often taxing Middle phase in the journey towards long-term results. This summary will walk you through how to establish clear targets, choose effective metrics to measure success, organize team structure and keep motivation levels high. Moreover, it highlights the importance of decision-making, prioritizing tasks, and fostering an environment of open communication to drive substantial progress.

Overcoming the Middle Phase

The MOVE model helps individuals overcome the tedious middle phase of achieving long-term goals by setting smaller, achievable targets. To avoid getting bogged down, individuals should establish clear goals and develop an urgent timeline. They can make broad aims more concrete by asking two questions: what would success look like, and what concrete steps are needed to achieve it? By adding shorter deadlines, individuals can stay motivated to achieve bigger deals and overcome the middle phase.

Effective Metrics for Measuring Success

Measuring success is easy with the right metrics. Choosing relevant and accurate forecasting measures is key. This summary explores how to choose effective metrics and how to allocate resources towards improvement.

The adage “What gets measured gets done” is popular in the business world. However, it begs the question, which metrics should measure success? Choosing the wrong metric can throw a wrench in the works, making it crucial to differentiate between effective and ineffective metrics.

Choosing relevant and accurate forecasting metrics is essential for measuring outcomes. Measuring activities or stages within a process is not as effective as measuring the desired outcome. For example, measuring the speed of customer-complaint resolution is not an effective metric for customer satisfaction. Instead, businesses should measure the number of returning customers or customer referrals as they are signs of customer satisfaction.

Measuring the right metrics is one thing, measuring them accurately is another. It is necessary to get creative to achieve desirable results. For instance, asking service representatives to conclude their interactions with customers by asking whether they would recommend the product or not.

After figuring out how to measure important metrics, the next step is to allocate resources towards improving those measurements. However, calculating the resources required for this can be challenging. A useful technique is sketching out two scenarios, each with a corresponding funding plan. Identifying your company’s priorities is key, and moving resources from one department to another is essential.

In conclusion, choosing effective metrics is important for measuring success. It is necessary to select relevant and accurate forecasting measures for measuring outcomes. Allocating resources towards improving measurements requires identifying company priorities and moving resources from one department to another if necessary.

Building a Strong Team with the Blank-Sheet Organization Chart

Imagine leading a team that is as eager and aligned as a group of sled dogs bracing themselves for the command to “Mush!” The key to achieving a cohesive and purpose-driven team lies in organization. To accomplish this, the MOVE model emphasizes creating an ideal team outline using the Blank-Sheet Organization Chart. This chart involves identifying necessary skill sets for the desired outcome and defining each role’s detailed requirements. Then, you can talk to trusted team members and obtain feedback to flesh out these roles further. This process transforms even the most disorganized companies into cohesive and successful entities.

Meaning over Money

People are willing to pay to run a marathon for a cause, but not for money. This illustrates that for motivation, a sense of purpose is more important than financial rewards. As a leader, it is crucial to create personal connections with team members and tie their work to the bigger picture. By making the connection between an employee’s work and the company’s overall success clear, their work becomes meaningful, leading to greater engagement. Engaged employees become problem solvers and contributors of ideas. Leaders must also genuinely care about the company’s mission to inspire their teams. If the business is uninspiring, seek meaning in the people served and the team. Ultimately, meaning drives emotion, which in turn drives engagement.

Embrace Fear and Hold Your Ground

In the Middle phase of change, doubts and fears will arise. As a leader, you must have valor and accept these uncomfortable feelings while pushing forward. Seek out experts and advisors to guide you and burn all bridges to retreat. Hold your ground and implement all necessary changes to see the benefits of your change initiative.

During the Middle phase of change, doubts and fears will arise, and employees will start to question if the change initiative is working. In this phase, the leader must have valor and accept these uncomfortable feelings while pushing forward. Being valorous is a matter of drawing on inner and outer resources while seeking out desirable companions such as experts and mentors who can guide the change strategy. To hold your ground, burn all bridges to retreat, and in some cases, destroy all means of retreat, just as Hernán Cortés did when he set fire to all his ships when his fleet landed in what is now Mexico. The only option should be to move forward and implement all necessary changes. This may involve adding new processes, which may be challenging for employees. Still, the leader must hold their ground to see the benefits of a change initiative. In summary, you must have courage and embrace fear to make a change initiative successful.

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