Urgency to Drive Progress
The mention of change can often lead to increased anxiety that stifles individual and organizational growth. Explaining the need for progress elicits reactions that are considerably more positive and welcomed. People like the idea of being better and doing better. For progress to occur, the desire to be better should be coupled with an urgency to align actions to the organization’s needs for improvement. It is up to leadership to create the urgency for progress.
Creating the Right Urgency
Most of us experience urgency each day. Hitting every traffic light on the way to an appointment can cause us to drive with a sense of urgency. Realizing you forgot to include a dial-in conference line number four minutes before the meeting begins can make you sweat. This type of distracting, and even destructive, urgency is not the kind of urgency that leads organizations to higher levels of success. Urgency born from fear and stress hinders improvement and productivity efforts.
Leaders create the right kind of urgency through clear and consistent communication about what matters to the organization. As gaps are realized and shifts are made, communicating goals and actions required to maintain progress builds urgency for the organization’s priorities. This type of urgency drives teams to achieve results. It provides just enough challenge to motivate and focus around a clear purpose.
5 Steps to Being Urgent Every Day
Achieving at the highest levels requires the right type of urgency to be consistently established throughout the organization. On-going attention and communication about top priorities and how they connect to each team member keeps the level of urgency at healthy and helpful levels.
Decide what matters
The first step in creating urgency for progress is to determine the needs for progress. What shifts do the data suggest you make? What should the team be monitoring? What will make the organization better? Once you know what matters to the organization, as a whole, consider how individual team members fit into that picture of success and purpose.