How Can I Review My Department’s Progress?

We all want out Department and areas of responsibility to do well but sometimes under pressure to achieve and deliver our goals and targets, we lose focus and are not able to fully measure how things are going.

The trick to dealing with this very important, critical self-review, is to use the 9 C approach systematically and carefully, to identify key areas of success, ahead of any appraisal or review, but also to identify areas of further development and areas needing attention.

  • Complexity: by keeping your activity as simple as possible you are able to focus upon the real goals that you have been charged with achieving. If there is too much detail, too many routines to follow and too many closely-related targets that overlap it is very likely that key activity is either being overlooked or not given the full attention that they deserve.
  • Collaboration: how does your work, and that of your area, collaborate with other areas of the business? Can you make collaboration work for you? What can be gained by all parties in collaborating and sharing issues rather than competing with them? A key question is how much of your time is spent in actively NOT collaborating and which does not move your area forward?
  • Creativity: how does your area move forward with innovation and new ideas? We should all be looking to continually look critically at work patterns and to deliver creative ways of completing tasks, especially in times of tight budgets and increased customer satisfaction.
  • Competition: looking at external, rather than internal competition, how can your area be more involved in meeting customer satisfaction or have a greater contribution to make to those directly dealing with customers? What can you glean by looking around at rival organisations that helps you and your activities?
  • Culture: do you promote a good, open, supportive and challenging operational culture in your work? Do your staff really understand and embody this approach?
  • Customers: be honest, are you really and consistently delivering a customer focus? If satisfying your customer(s) is a side issue rather than the absolute core of your work then it is time for a fresh look at your plans and delivery – before someone else, higher in the organisation, does this for you!
  • Communication: how good are you at this vital skill and do your staff get the right communication at the right time, in the right quantity and of the right quality. If not, that is down to you!
  • Control: how autocratic are you? How democratic are you? Do you have a style that has flexibility and that ultimately delivers results? Why not ask a couple of “critical friends” for their honest opinion and a smattering of trusted staff for their view?
  • Change: we operate in environments that are all about dealing with change BUT successful managers see change as a positive and are able to respond to the challenge. Very successful managers, however, research, consider and anticipate change.

By considering the 9 C technique on a regular basis you will be able to fine-tune your management style and be better placed to deliver on your Departmental, and personal, targets.

Good Luck!

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