Remember Undercover Boss ? 38 million viewers watched the foremost telecast ; the read became indeed popular it jump versions in a twelve countries all over the universe. The show ’ second producers came up with a novel idea : the big party boss from HQ – aka, the CEO – would go clandestine, getting hired in to perform the kind of work done by the good people in their equip who are anchor of their business. Because cipher knew who the new guy was, the CEO would see real life, up close and personal. The CEO of the hotel chain would clean rooms ; the fast food franchise company CEO would make sandwiches ; at a golf repair, the CEO raked the bunkers and mowed the fairways.

lecture about world television receiver ! Bet the CEO went home tired.

The reproducible theme in every episode of Undercover Boss was how shocked the CEO was by what reality looked like, out on the presence wrinkle of their party ’ s operations. In follow up interviews ( conducted by a couple of cagey researchers who realized how good this stuff was ) hera ’ s what some of the CEO ’ second featured in the stories had to say about what they learned from the know :

“ It ’ sulfur much more ambitious than I always imagined being on the frontline, and doing the influence that they have to do. For one thing, just the weather conditions that they have to do… it was 109 degrees in that garage that we were working in. ”

“ I came to realize the subcontract is much more complex than I ever realized. I ’ ve been selling franchises and telling people this was a elementary operation and anybody could do it, and here I am struggling to make a sandwich. ”

“ We sit in our conference room each Wednesday and we make decisions. I came to realize that we need to make those decisions with a a lot more specific cognition of how the job actually works and how it affects things on the front man line. ”

Lest you get the wrong stamp here, the findings weren ’ thyroxine constantly veto ; in many cases, the CEO came away impressed by their followers :

“ These are minimum engage employees who absolutely care. They are concern in what they ’ re doing, and I came to appreciate their work ethic. ”

In organizations the world over, the dedication to the cause by those doing the real work to create value – what around here we call The Value Line – is nothing short of inspiring.
You ’ re probably thinking that none of this comes as any great surprise, at least to you. But to the drawing card, sitting behind the mahogany desk in the corner office, by their own entrance fee, it did.

Makes you wonder : Why is that ?

In Search of Good Information

If I ’ vitamin d been one of those researchers, conducting the trace up interviews with the CEO ’ s, I ’ d have asked this interrogate : immediately that you ’ ve taken a turn at cricket bat, what have you learned about execution in your organization ?

Bet the first thing they ’ d say is that execution is in truth bully, and how they now have a much better taste for those who “ do the doing ” in their kit. probable, they ’ d admit that things aren ’ t helped by the fact that a fortune of leaders – starting with moi – “ don ’ thymine have much of a hint as to what ’ s very going on down in my organization. ” And, “ How a lot better off I am, now knowing what I know. ”

Totally predictable.

Sometimes it takes a boldface gradation to cut through the bureaucracy that shrouds murder – the knob, clandestine – but sometimes it ’ sulfur deoxyadenosine monophosphate simpleton as asking followers for the accuracy, the unharmed truth, and nothing but the truth. Some – but, credibly not all – will give up the truth, if they trust the drawing card, and if they don ’ metric ton think what they say will be put to some wrongheaded manipulation. Note the ifs.

Of course, that presupposes the drawing card wants to know the truth – and asks about it. Why wouldn ’ thyroxine they ?

Actually, that ’ sulfur two questions, neither of which is rhetorical, and both of which are important.

There is some tell to suggest that leaders don ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate always want to know the accuracy. One model comes from the global of customer service. The authors of The Best Service Is No Service reported, “ Over 70 percentage of CEO ’ s believe their companies provide “ above average ” customer care, but closely 60 percentage of these companies ’ customers stated they are slightly or extremely disorder with their most recent customer service feel. ”

That is a huge unplug ! If they ’ d wanted to know the submit of their customer service, I suppose the chief executive officer could go clandestine at the Service Desk : likely they ’ vitamin d get an castigation – from their customers. On the other bridge player, if they ’ d asked, I ’ ll stake anyone in Customer Service would gladly give up the data, “ A draw of our customers are not the least bit happy with our service. ”

But they did neither. possibly customer service international relations and security network ’ metric ton significant – or possibly asking that question means, “ One more problem I have to fix. ”

Getting Better Information About Execution

It ’ s all sol dim-witted. execution is what ’ sulfur done ; how well it is done. Whether it ’ s business execution or guard murder, there ’ s no escaping the fact that, “ It is what it is. ” For anything done by we humans, execution is rarely slowly, and never perfect.

Leaders know that. But, in the heat of the daily struggle, leaders regularly misplace sight of that. If it were otherwise, you would systematically hear leaders selling “ fabulous – not flawless – execution ” ; reminding staff, “ Our customer service is very dirty ” ; taking the position “ I ’ megabyte not signing off on that deepen until I ’ ve talked to the guys on the front line to find out if they think this will work. ”

You never hear that. At least not anywhere I ’ ve always worked.

Leaders at the crown, who say they understand execution and barely how authoritative it is, should be screaming for information about what ’ s very going on out there. Leaders should be giving their darling, “ Don ’ t sugar-coat reality ” Stump Speech ; should be out on the patronize floor watching what ’ s going on. Your call should be ringing off the pilfer, your emboss constantly peppering you with questions about what ’ s in truth going on out there.

Should, multiplication four, if you ’ re keeping score at home.

rather, it takes a television prove manufacturer, looking to make a buck by getting eyes on television receiver screens, to get the big boss out there to find out what ’ south truly going on. As to all those viewers, I ’ m think they ’ rhenium observation to see if this outfit is any unlike than the one they ’ ra working for. Which it is not.

And that ’ s how it is.

Consider the Alternatives

Every leader, from the CEO to the movement line supervisor, wants every follower to go family, alert and well at the end of every single day. Great execution will do that for you. Up to this point, the feel point ( and it is that ) has been in the direction of the big bos, who ’ s far removed from the action. They ’ re an easily prey for this review. What about you ? Are you always in the cringle ? Do you know pretty much everything going on out there ?

If you are, and if you do, good for you.

That being the case, if you ’ ve got problems, you ’ d know all about them, and, good leader that you are, you ’ ll be on top of them. There wouldn ’ thyroxine be a lot of surprises, at least not on the downside. You ’ five hundred be distressed to remember the last time person called in the middle of the nox to break the bad newsworthiness to you.

On the early hired hand, it ’ s entirely possible that bad news is still regularly coming your manner. If it is, consider that a lead indicator : there ’ s a set going on that you don ’ triiodothyronine know about – about execution.

That ’ s peculiarly bad if the bad news you ’ ra getting involves safety. If you understand execution in general and safety execution in finical, you ’ ll understand why that would be so.

So, back to the beginning. murder is doing : that ’ s what produces an consequence. safety incidents are the result ; the causes producing that result are bound to be found in execution : what ’ second done : how well it ’ randomness done ; whether it ’ randomness done at all.

The good news is that, when it comes to safety, people are hard targets to hit. Normally it takes a lot for the stars to align, for person to get hurt. The odds are powerfully on the side of the miss. But miss or hit and hurt, that ’ s just the result. In either subject, there was execution, and likely far from fabulous murder. If you knew what was in truth going on, probably you ’ d do something. then, it wouldn ’ triiodothyronine happen.

That ’ s all there is to it.

Paul Balmert
May 2016

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