Last week I participated in a 3-day online conference run by the Thought Leaders Business School (TLBS). These conferences happen quarterly and they are amazing times to stop, connect with peers, reflect on what I’m doing and reset my focus for the quarter ahead. They’re like pit stops on the road to completing a marathon. I’ve now been doing these quarterly conferences for 12 months and I really feel like I’m running to the speed of a new rhythm. I’ve found a new groove.
TLBS is a system of performance, designed specifically for people like me – people who run a practice, not a business. I now know, that if I follow the system, if I play the game, I’ll get better results.
If you run a business (or a practice for that matter) – have you considered what your system of performance is? Is it the best system for your business to realise its full potential? Or are there opportunities to tweak the way you’re working?
James Clear, author of Atomic Habits says that if you want to improve your life and enhance your personal performance, set a goal, but focus on your habits. “Goals are about the results you want to achieve. Systems are about the processes that lead to those results”.
James talks about the power of an atomic habit – a regular practice or routine that is small and easy to do, and compounds over time. For example, if you aim to get just 1% better each day, you’ll end up with results that are 37 times better after one year. What starts with a small change, adds up to a big gain.
In the same way, focussing on the system rather than the goal of change, is the fundamental process that contributes to overall improvement.
If habits are the smallest units of behaviour that contribute
to overall performance, then systems are the scaffolding that support
high performance cultures.
As James says, “You do not rise to the level of your goals. You fall to the level of your systems”. Systems provide leaders with the framework required to uphold performance across an entire organisation.
Systems create habits, which create results.
Once you have performance systems in place; adapting, changing and responding to opportunities or shifts in the market becomes easy. Instead of you doing the work, the system does the work for you.
My new book – available from 30 October – is all about systems of performance and what every business needs to do to be a high performing team. It’s been such a challenging yet rewarding journey and over the next 9 weeks I’ll be sharing deeper insights into my learnings and ideas. If you’d like to join me for this crazy ride – then let’s connect via socials.
Clear, J. (2018). Atomic Habits: An easy and proven way to build good habits and break bad ones. Penguin Random House, UK.