And he isn’t getting stuck in the mud of the bureaucracy in the process.
He is taking focused and specific actions that are in his realm of authority (whether he’s pushing the envelope of that authority is certainly up for debate). This allows him to move quickly rather than spending a lot of time waiting for others (i.e. Congress) to move on things.
What this means is he’s making change happen quickly and getting results quickly.
And that is something that is highly noticed and often well rewarded in business.
And if you’re an employee, you want to be able to demonstrate that you’re actively driving business results (and yes, you can do that in any position from the front desk to the corner office).
Or if you’re starting a new job it is even more critical to make that big, positive splash in the first 30-60-90 days. And having a good 100 day plan is critical to that success.
The 100 Day Plan
The 100 day plan isn’t a new concept. It is often used both for those implementing the plan as well as those on the outside evaluating an administration’s success.
It is common in evaluating political administrations as they come into office.
And it is common for leadership transitions in business.
Change is often both exciting and scary.
And people like to make assessments of a situation quickly. The 100 day plan is a way to do that.
But it isn’t just Presidents and CEO’s who can implement a good 100 day plan. You can too.
Whether you are a middle manager looking to transform a workgroup or project team to achieve your annual big goal (and get that raise or bonus).
Or you are a project coordinator or telecom construction manager or site acquisition specialist looking to make your mark.
Take these concepts and make them your own.
By implementing these you’ll rocket your career forward and be that “go-to” person everyone wants on their team (and that means future job opportunities where you set the terms, not them).
So back to the Trump example, let’s see what he did and how you can use the same concepts to replicate that success in your job situation.
The Grand Vision
Nothing great starts without a compelling vision. Something visible, interesting, maybe somewhat controversial.
For Trump it was “The Wall”.
He told everyone what he was going to do…Build a Wall (and it would be huuuge). And Mexico would pay for it.
You don’t get bigger and more audacious than that.
So what is your grand vision? Or one you can pull from the company goals?
Most big companies these days have a performance review process. As part of that process people are expected to set goals for themselves (or their bosses do it for them). In most cases these goals are designed to align with the company’s strategic goals. Whether that is delivering a big project (in my wireless telecom project that could be delivering the Plan of Execution (POE) – that is often another version of the client’s 100 day and annual plan).
So first you need to find out what are the important objectives for your company. And then ask and brainstorm how you can influence those results from your role and your team’s role.
Once you come up with that big goal or plan (in my telecom development world it could be “Start Construction within a Week of Site Acquisition Complete”). Those in telecom know that doesn’t typically happen. PO’s, landlord access issues, weather, materials. You name it, there are things that can derail you.
But this is a Grand Vision you and your team can very much understand. And then everyone on the team can bring ideas and implement things in their area of responsibility to make this happen.
But great things can’t happen without…
Work With High Achievers
Trump didn’t do the standard politician thing of appointing bureaucrats to pay off political favors and do his bidding while screwing over the country.
No, he brought in top performers. Doers. Transformative Leaders. People with the same vision and implementation style (do it now and break the rules instead of just melting into the toxic beltway bubble).
It is the same with great companies.
You don’t achieve awesome results by micromanaging everyone. There just isn’t enough time in the day to do that.
You need highly motivated people driven for success.
Not all “A” players. But definitely a lot of “A” and “B” players who are motivated to succeed.
I’ve worked with a lot of these people over the years and have found you can accomplish so much more with good people who are compelled by a Grand Vision and their own desire to succeed and grow in their career.
They make things happen. They develop trust. And team members start having an almost psychic connection with each other where they complete each others’ sentences and just know what needs to be done.
You need to work with high achievers. And if you aren’t with them, you know who they are and where they are. Connect with them and start preparing to make your next move in their direction. Good people want to work with other good people. It makes everyone better. You need to be thinking that way.
Which takes us next to the…
Create an Implementation Plan
No grand goal is complete without the key 30-60-90 day steps or milestones to get your grand objective accomplished. Trump used his knowledge of business, real estate deals, and project management (he’s known for getting projects done ahead of schedule and under budget) to lay out an aggressive but achievable plan.
You need to break down your plan in the same way. What are the intermediate steps or objectives that will get you there?
Lay out those building blocks. Look at the things that are limiting factors in your success.
Is it certain people you need on the team? Or certain skillsets? Or training? Or a re-engineered process?
Look at the details and your Implementation Plan will be your roadmap to success.
But that roadmap is worthless without…
Action, Action, Action
You need to hit the ground running. The greatest plans are worthless if you aren’t willing to put in the action and hours to turn your vision into reality.
Trump is known for an incredible work ethic. He works all the time and never lets up. He’s passionate about his work and will not let laziness stand in his way.
And you need to do the same. Whether it is the start of a new year, the start of a new project, or starting a new job, or you’re in a turnaround situation.
And with the new smartphone age of super short attention spans, you really need to show incredible progress in the first 30 days of a new initiative or opportunity.
So bring that implementation plan, cue up your actions on Sundays so come Monday morning you’re hitting the ground and ticking off those actions and getting results quickly each week and over the first 30 days.
But what happens when you face others who are not on board?
Dealing Swiftly With Naysayers
Trump is known for his work on “The Apprentice” and his catch phrase, “You’re Fired!”
In his first days in the White House he demonstrated this by immediately firing the interim Attorney General who was actively undermining his position (by telling the bureaucrats under her to not follow Trump’s executive order that set certain immigration guidelines she didn’t agree with).
As with the AG, anyone who undermines his work, will likely be fired immediately and replaced with people who will commit to the vision.
And similarly, if you’re in a leadership position or a turnaround situation you need to be aware of who’s in and who’s out as well. And you’ll need to make appropriate changes quickly if you want to avoid the “naysayers” sinking your ship.
One of Trump’s biggest challenges is he’s bucking the system. And a lot of the bureaucrats who didn’t vote for him are vehemently opposed to him and his agenda. As such, they’ve they’ve undermined his initiatives by leading information to media (who are very willing to spread an anti-Trump message).
I’m sure that will lead to some action (like Reagan’s firing of the air traffic controllers) to send a message that will begin the transformation. Will it be a big impact in the VA? Or something similar? We’ll have to wait and see.
You may have to do the same. Gossip and negativity spreads like wildfire and can kill momentum. So you need to bring along those that support you, convince those that are on the fence, and replace those who actively oppose you (yes, you need some who will challenge you but support the final decision, but once that decision is made you can’t have people undermining that decision).
And the good 100 day plan you have will help you through that.
Reflection and Revision and Repeat
Like every great plan, it is often obsolete on Day 1.
Things change, often rapidly. And you need to be prepared with contingency plans. Backups to backups. And be willing to adjust your approach as new information presents itself.
The great leader will be able to roll with change and still align it to his master plan.
And you need to do the same. Flexibility is critical when you’re dealing with people and implementing rapid change. But if you can be flexible, you can get a lot accomplished.
Document, document, document.
Documentation provides clarity.
As you’re setting expectations with your team, being clear on what you want from them and how you’re holding them accountable is critical. Too often we do that after the fact or are not clear ourselves and expect everyone to figure it out themselves. Not a recipe for success.
That can be preparing a more formalized Project Plan that lays out your expectations for each person’s contribution. Or it can be job descriptions and definitions of success for each role that will help ensure the vision is achieved and the results flow.
And you also need to document your successes. And this can also then help you so you can…
So you laid out a great plan, implemented it, and saw success.
But did you forget to acknowledge and reward those who supported your vision and implemented their part successfully?
And it isn’t just about money (although that is important to hiring and keeping great people too).
Life is too short not to share success with others. And no grand plan is achievable without the contributions of your team members, vendors, clients, etc.
So make sure you’re providing regular and specific acknowledgement of the performers. And share those successes with the group and show how their contributions are getting everyone close to the goal.
This reinforces a positive feedback loop that reinforces success and energizes the team.
So what are you waiting for? Why are you still here? Go make 2017 awesome. Get started today. Start putting together your 100 Day Plan.
Need strategic guidance on your own 100 Day Plan?
Then contact me and see whether it might make sense to work together in some form (finding you that next opportunity or career coaching or strategic opportunity evaluation).
Regardless of how you move forward, make sure you do move forward. Life is too short not to. And you’ll find the ride is awesome!