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Step Four: Find Ways to Exceed the Future Best Practices in Your Enterprise

Mar 31, 2008
"You have to kiss a lot of frogs to find a prince."
-Various

In this article you can learn how to exceed the best practices that anyone else will be able to do in the next five years.

Possible keys to your success lie in developing proprietary data that others cannot duplicate, faster ways to shift internal rewards and recognition, and in constantly combining future best practice techniques in new and improved ways.

When the Players Take the Field

A good way to think about this subject lies in an analogy to what football coaches and their staffs do during a football game.

Each team starts with a game plan that builds on analyzing the history and potential of each team versus each other (offense versus defense, defense versus offense, and special teams against each other).

However, as play starts, a lot of things may change that affect those plans:

-The weather conditions may be different from what has ever occurred before.

-You may have hail followed by near-hurricane conditions in September.

-Key players may be injured early in the game.

-And the field may be in worse or better shape than you expected.

Quickly, then, you need to adapt to these circumstances as well as anticipate what will happen in the future.

The hail is probably going to melt, and that will make the field wet and slippery. More injuries may occur unless you change the spikes on the players' shoes.

If you make your players less maneuverable than the other team, however, the other team will run around you (literally) and you will lose. So you have to balance safety and maneuverability to reflect what the current conditions are. And you should have a lot of people who can quickly change the spikes because you may have to do it more than once.

You will probably find that you'll want to call the plays from the sidelines so that the latest thinking about the changing conditions can be fitted into the revised game plan.

You may want to have a lot of data loaded into a computer ahead of time so you can produce adjusted game plans to reflect the conditions in seconds. Turnovers and touchdowns happen quickly in such situations, and one or two such turnarounds can determine the final outcome of the game.

If conditions change a lot during the course of the game, you'll probably have a big advantage. For example, sometimes you'll have the right players in with the right shoes and the right play while the other team is falling down (literally) with the wrong personnel.

Be excited by the idea of exceeding future best practices:

-First, few operations pay much attention to the whole idea now.

-Second, those who are using best practices are employing only a fraction of all the currently known best practices.

-Third, many companies won't allocate the time, money, and effort needed to develop new combinations of best practices.

-Fourth, using proprietary sources of data, if done properly, can provide you with lead times that will take decades to surpass.

So as long as you make some efforts at implementing beyond the future best practices in locating, anticipating, and adapting to irresistible forces, you'll probably gain a competitive edge over many companies. However, breakthrough gains come more often through serious study and application in this area.
About the Author
Donald Mitchell is an author of seven books including Adventures of an Optimist, The 2,000 Percent Squared Solution, The 2,000 Percent Solution, The 2,000 Percent Solution Workbook, The Irresistible Growth Enterprise, and The Ultimate Competitive Advantage. Read about creating breakthroughs through 2,000 percent solutions and receive tips by e-mail by registering for free at

http://www.2000percentsolution.com .
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