Chapter 26Establish Your Business Facts of Life

The Challenge

Organizations with unclear core values and performance expectations abound. Lack of clarity invites a sense of entitlement that infects the culture and makes consistent execution a pipe dream. Even when expectations are given, they often don't directly affect the most desired or necessary behaviors within a culture. Thus, they may influence behaviors but not necessarily the ones that matter most.

If You Don't Make Waves, You'll Drown

In my book If You Don't Make Waves, You'll Drown: 10 Hard-Charging Strategies for Leading in Politically Correct Times (John Wiley & Sons 2005), I outlined 25 sample facts of life. Business facts of life (BFOL) are no-nonsense, no-gray-area, and nonnegotiable expectations that focus team members on the behaviors that are most essential to reaching the ultimate few objectives (TUFs). In the subsequent paragraphs, I offer sample BFOL customized specifically in support of master the art of execution (MAX) to ensure that the most vital daily behaviors are made clear enough to all team members up front. As you consider the following 12, feel free to use or tweak any or all to strengthen the core value or performance standard pillars:

  1. You are expected to know, and be able to recite, those TUFs most relevant to your particular department or division.

    If we're not on the same page, we are unconsciously working against one another.

  2. You are expected to understand and execute ...

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