Not long after the leadership team at a manufacturing company I worked with decided that factory productivity was the single most important thing they could focus on that year, the company leader ran into a tricky execution decision. In this case Ted, the member of the leadership team directly responsible for boosting the capacity of the two largest production plants, seemed to underappreciate the urgency of that project.
Ted continued going about his work in the same way he had before they identified this as the organization's number one priority. He wasn't slacking off, but he wasn't exactly making the necessary headway on the new critical initiatives either. Not only was he failing to make any notable increases in the two plants' productivity, he didn't seem to be concerned about it. He didn't reallocate any new resources to it. He didn't ask other members of the leadership team to borrow any of their resources. He didn't even fly to the plant location in Belgium to be onsite for this critical project.
In other words, even though the CEO and his team had decided that optimizing plant productivity was their decision pulse for the year, and that all other projects would be subservient to that priority until it was adequately addressed, Ted couldn't seem to make the turn.
He saw the CEO's blinker. He turned on his own blinker. But he just couldn't bring himself to actually grab the wheel and move from the old lane into the new lane. He kept on ...