Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Process Vs Results

Few days ago a cricketer who was worth a place in state junior team and hailed as one of the replacement for the Great Wall of Indian Cricket in Karnataka Cricket; was not able to make good scores off late came to me to talk about what’s going wrong with him.

The conversation is as follows.

Cricketer: While I am playing the way I have always done, but not being able to score more runs consistently. Do get to score 50s, 70s once in few months but not so much that I get to play 1st class cricket for the state.

Me: Hmm.. Sounds so familiar, tell me more about it, when was the last time you scored big, what all you did right and what you did a day before and after that.

Cricketer: Last time it was a 75 against a team which had good first class cricketers. Coming to think of it, I had good 2 days of nets and just before the match, it was good mental frame I was in. Post the match I thought I should do the same more often.

Me: It set me thinking, which I always believe in, that it is more of process and process which will result in better quality results. I call this: ‘IF YOU HAVE THE “RIGHT” PROCESS, “DESIRED” RESULTS ARE JUST A MATTER OF TIME.’

The more we started speaking, I was convinced that the guy realized more of his mistakes and talents (which to be fair with him was the right thing to do) and insights  on “practice” and “smart work”.

This brings me to the topic ‘is result alone matters or the process also has a role to play in getting the desired results time after time’

Taking cricket analogy as discussed with my international cricketer friend, The difference between 1st class cricketer to that of an average Joe on the road is the “repeatability of the process of shot making or bowling a line consistently over a period of time, of course coupled with talent and hard work..

If someone like Bret Lee is thundering at 150KMPH ball after ball and the batsmen is coming down the line and driving the ball towards “covers” or “extra covers” it’s not because of the talent alone but also because of the time spent at the nets making the whole process repeat ball after ball, day after day and year after year.

An organization where I consult, have a very good business which is showing double digit growth year on year while the markets struggle to do it. By their own admission, the product sells itself with very little or no marketing effort. (For USD 400 Million turnover their marketing budget is USD 2, 00,000 per annum).

However the organization has no process or any repeatable work culture. Since we have started putting process in place, what we found was with the same resources and effort, they could go to next levels of sales (Projected for this year in USD 600 Million), with proper process in place.

While not dwelling much in to the details of the case, I would like to bring in to perspective the thought while what matters are “results”, equally important is “Process” which produces the results