Velocity vs. Productivity; When fast is too fast!

Remember Wile E. Coyote & The Road Runner?

How are you making the same mistakes as Wile E. these days in pursuit of your ultimate goal? As your strategic train pulls out of the station, how many people are being left behind on the platform waving goodbye?

Or as in the picture just to your right, as the competition turns the corner & picks up another win, how close are you and your team to self-imploding in dramatic fashion?

The Answer is in the Pace you set

It’s all down to setting the appropriate pace to fit your organization, it’s culture & current skill-set. Go too slow & you’ll loose trust, buy-in, and eventually engagement all-together.

Go too quick and you’ll either loose people in the process (increased staff turn-over / sick-leave), and or you’ll suffer the consequences of poor quality / low productivity.

Go “just the right pace” and watch your profit & productivity sky-rocket in flight.

How do you find your right pace?

Your people will tell you! It’s as simple as (1) doing a skills assessment, possibly complemented by (2) a personality profile just in case you’re not sure. You want people to be working on the strengths, instead of getting “slightly less-bad” at things they’re NOT good at.

(3) You want to make sure you have the right rhythmic processes, both from a human as well as an organizational perspective. Remember that peak performance is only maintained by (on average) 90 minute work sprints. Respect your teams biological clock, and program recovery periods so as to ensure the most effective use of everyone’s energy.

As much as you might hate to admit it, people aren’t machines! You can’t just open up their skull & upgrade the processor or install more memory in order to get more work out of them.

Velocity also means agility

Having an IT background, I often borrow terms & examples from this industry to leverage toward more general business practices. Velocity, in this case as it relates to Agile software development, in itself is a measure of productivity.

You’re looking to measure the velocity as calculated by counting the number of units of work completed in a certain interval, determined at the start of the project. Substitute “project” with “task, objective or goal”, and in order to get the adequate velocity which serves everyone’s purpose, you simply (and collectively) run an estimation exercise as to the units of work (with the appropriate skill-set) that will be required to successfully complete the project, task, objective and or goal on time.

Velocity makes you look smart

Follow this golden rule and you’ll also be able to gain greater agility, the ability to make adjustments & pivot when necessary, in your business.

Ensuring your team is operating at optimum velocity means success for them, success for you, and success for your organization. Optimum velocity also increases the probability of getting the right things done right (a.k.a. QUALITY). How’s that for Productivity?

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