Wednesday, 23 September 2009

The hierarchy of success

Seth Godin thinks it looks like this:

  1. Attitude
  2. Approach
  3. Goals
  4. Strategy
  5. Tactics
  6. Execution

Essentially, he believes how you approach a project (or anything for that matter) is the crux of success – “most everyone has a style, and if you pick the wrong one, then all the strategy, tactics and execution in the world won't work nearly as well.”

I believe that. Attitude is key. Setting goals and strategy – crucial. But execution last? Yes, execution is the final step, but relegating it to the bottom of this list implies it has a lower priority, is of less importance than the items before it. My thought is execution shouldn’t be on this list at all. Instead it should be the first item on a separate list, in a column all its own, after items 1-5 have been thought through first. There’s everything else and then there’s execution.

There are a lot of great people out there with great attitudes who have great ideas, but all of the great attitude, ideas and strategy in the world mean absolutely nothing if you can’t execute. And execute well.

Absolutely, you have to start with a great idea. Great execution can’t save a bad one...but bad execution? It can kill the greatest of them.

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