The ability to get things done
What is it?
Execution is the ability to create a detailed plan that achieves a certain goal and then drive it to completion. Sometimes the plan needs to be altered and there are almost always problems but people who know how to execute get results no matter what.
Why is it important?
Murphy’s Law tells us that there will always be problems. Things rarely go according to plan. If managers gave up at the first sign of a problem, their organization wouldn’t need them. Managers need to stay focused on deadlines and deal with problems swiftly and creatively or things will never get done.
Use Project Management Tools
Managers need to know how to create detailed plans that identifies all the major tasks of a project and then assign those tasks to the right people. Gantt charts can be a useful planning tool by identifying all the major tasks that need to get done assigning each task to one or more people and given a deadline. In addition, certain tasks need to be completed before other tasks can begin so those dependencies are noted; those are bottlenecks that can stall the work. This is all put into a chart that forms a graphic visualization of the project timeline.
Get Regular Updates
Managers who are good at executing and delivering results do so by getting regular updates from their direct reports. They don’t leave anything to chance. They are focused on deadlines and expect others to deliver on time so they’re in regular communication on a weekly and even daily basis to hold direct reports accountable.
To improve your execution skills you need to expect problems and try to anticipate where they may happen. Once a potential problem begins to emerge, it needs to be dealt with swiftly and thoughtfully. Small problems usually turn into bigger problems if they are not addressed. What are the biggest problems you’re dealing with today? Write them down and create a plan to deal with them proactively.