The Go-Fast Formula, O+S+C=S(a): A Framework for Change

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In recent years, there’s been a growing trend, fascination, and adoption of organizational techniques. Thanks to the exponential power of the internet and social media, Marie Kondo, The Home Edit, A Bowl Full of Lemons, Neat Method, and others have inspired countless individuals to sort, purge, organize, categorize, and fold their way to a happier, simpler life.

This concept is interesting because simplifying indicates something complicated, and by organizing, the end goal produces more peace and efficiency. I think these organizing professions are on to something. But instead of buying a new set of clear acrylic lidded boxes from the Container Store, I’d like to show how this “Go-Fast Formula” shows up in change leadership.

If our drawers overflow with t-shirts and socks, our minds are overflowing with too many sound bites, memes, emails, noise, and physical clutter. When our minds are overflowing with mindless input, and our work or home space is disordered, chances are high you have difficulty prioritizing, working efficiently, and with speed and agility. A cluttered workspace creates a cluttered mind. However, integrating the Go-fast formula, these four steps into your workplace, you and others will be working at a higher rate of speed, focusing on the right priorities.

1. Order

Benjamin Franklin, a founding father and brilliant thinker, is noted for his quote, “A place for everything, and everything in its place.” How true. In this modern-day, it’s easy to scoff knowing people during the founding of America possessed less and therefore did not need clear acrylic bins with reusable labels. Rampant consumerism wasn’t an epidemic in the 18th or 19th centuries like it is today.

Maybe Benjamin Franklin didn’t need shelf dividers from the Container Store, but he did know and understood the importance of order. People feel empowered and engaged if their home and work environment are clean, uncluttered, safe, and organized. We know this to be true.

When our desk is organized, our papers are in proper folders, and our folders are in proper filing cabinets, it is no longer a place to rummage and churn through each morning, wasting time and starting the day digging out of a hole. In essence, we’re starting the day playing offense, and playing offense is proactive and energizing. Order takes time, but it lays the foundation for the following steps in the Go-Fast Formula.

2. Simplicity

The messy, cluttered desk space is an example of small, inconspicuous moments that complicate our days. Minor complications add up to a complicated life. But complication begins to feel normal, even necessary. The busier, more haggard, and harried we live life, the prouder we are. “Life is crazy right now!” Or “Oh gosh, we’re so busy” are common refrains we fall asleep to if we’re not aware of the benefits of simplicity.

In the workplace, complex strategic plans, initiatives, and incentives are enough to handle without adding a layer of cluttered complexity to the mix, which robs us of our focus and slows down productivity, creativity, and innovation. Clear communication and simple, clean workplaces will be more conducive to building trust, creativity, and employee effectiveness. Complexity is the enemy of execution. Complication wears us down, becomes discouraging, and can lead to burnout. In the Go-Fast Formula, simplicity allows us to focus on what matters, which is vital, especially when executing business strategy.

3. Clarity

It’s easy to see how the Go-Fast Formula builds upon itself. When order and simplicity become priorities, clarity naturally follows. Clarity is the quality or state of being clear. Clarity makes people feel settled, certain, and relaxed. The “a-ha” moment when you understand your purpose and how to attain it and things become well defined, or when someone says they understand you, is clarity. Clarity cannot exist with disorder and complication, and without it, confusion and frustration are perpetuated. When employees feel settled, sure, and relaxed, energy, excitement, and motivation arise in the workplace. When the pump is primed, it’s time to move.

4. Speed (and Agility)

When a team of employees feels empowered and engaged, due to the order found in the workplace, focused on what matters because things are simplified, settled, sure, and relaxed because of the clarity they possess, moving with speed and agility becomes a reality. Each step in the Go-Fast Formula culminates in an individual or team’s ability to move fast and change directions quickly without compromising quality and focus. 

In a complicated world that will remain complicated and ever-changing, being good at going fast and changing directions is imperative for your success and that of your organization. Change leadership shifts the typical business paradigm, making order, simplicity, and clarity the path towards speed. A company that changes and adapts retains happy and invested employees.

If order, simplicity, clarity are foreign concepts to your company, and if speed and agility feel like a pipe dream, you might need to catch a different vision. One that leads from the middle empowering more people to lead, capitalizing on the heart’s power in addition to the head. I would love to meet with you, your leadership team, and your people to cast a new vision for the future. Reach out today.