Thursday, January 10, 2013

OADD - Organizational Attention Deficit Disorder

Does your organization have attention deficit disorder?

  1. Inability to focus
  2. Distractedness
  3. Incomplete projects
  4. Penchant for novelty
  5. Intense energy with little output
  6. Employee burnout due to a lack of achievement
Organizational pressure to produce the new thing, new product, new service, new process drives us to distraction.  People are often overwhelmed and consequently unable to focus long enough to get something done.

  1. Reactions to market pressures
  2. Undisciplined managers who believe everything is #1 TOP PRIORITY
  3. Multiple, disconnected initiatives
  4. Leadership changes
  5. "Me" generation mentality
  6. Executive sound bytes
  7. Social media cognitions
  8. ... a fundamental lack of patience.

While we cannot control the causes of OADD, we can control our reactions.  Disciplined managers/leaders perform a daily assessment of priorities and develop fierce determination to 'stay the course' in the midst of all the distractions that come their way.

A manager once told me he had to decide who he was going to disappoint (he used different words to describe his situation ... I will not share them.)  He understood that some things were far more important than others and, at all costs, must be completed to achieve organizational success. 

If you see this happening in your organization, pay close attention to the lack of attention.  Lead! Find a way to remind people of the original goals they designed.  

Design a feedback loop for recurring reminders of original intent.  What did you want to accomplish?  What got you off track?  Why? 

This is a insidious phenomena in organizations today.  Lack of attention = a lack of long-term results.
Better pay attention to this! 

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