Bob Pozen is a busy, busy man as he is an attorney, full time professor at Harvard Business School as well as get this head of a two billion dollar mutual fund. His story somewhat reminds me of Carlos Ghosn who headed up both automakers Nissan and Renault simultaneously, a feat which I still can’t get my mind around.
However being part of the established Harvard culture class, Mr Pozen also writes for HBR (Harvard Business Review) in his spare time and was recently interviewed as how does he do it, to live a super human life as he does. In the interview he shares such (lame) tips as to carry a flashlight to be able to read in dark areas such as taxi cabs or airplanes and the reason this is lame? If you want to be efficient buy an iPad and go paperless as well as reduce your carbon footprint thus upping your over all sustainability index, however this is not the point.
What Mr. Pozen did say that grabbed me was “results, results, results” and it was not the word as we’ve all heard it before as its standard management 101 rhetoric. However it’s that he said it three times, and what’s the magic of that you ask? If your into real-estate investing you would recognize it as being akin to “location, location, location” meaning there is only one important aspect of a real-estate purchase and that is the location of the property as everything else adds little material value to the purchase. As if you don’t like the color, you can paint, don’t like the building, knock it down and build a new on as the only thing which you can NOT do is move the “location“.
This said it’s clear that Pozen is drawing a very similar parallel here as the “result” is the goal and the only consideration, not the number of times you’ve stayed late at the office, the miles traveled on an airplane and so on as all that matters like “location” is the “result”. Many people get hung up in what Seth Goden calls a “culture of attendance” as people show up and expect to be paid for their time rather than their “results”.
When you start your day, do you make a list of the results you would like to achieve that day? One of the key Aha moments in my life came from an Earl Nightingale audio tape from over 30 years ago which wound around for almost 60 minutes to convey one simple fact. That every day, start your day by making a list of the things you wish to accomplish (i.e. results) today and that list should be no more than 10 items long. So for almost 30 years now almost every business day is started by making a list and checking it throughout the day to help stay on track towards achieving the needed results.
While we wax away from the micro back to the macro world for the big picture, does your staff know the results which are expected of them? As this is a fundamentally important aspect for success as look at the top producing auto assembly facilities as they have “scoreboards” displaying target production as well as their position at that moment to achieving it. The same for call centers and their tally boards which provide dynamic “real time” feedback to the staff to get them to the result, result, result. So what are you doing to achieve your results…