Have you ever noticed that when you’ve been so focused on something, you start to see it everywhere? I drove my girlfriend crazy because we kept seeing things this weekend, and I’d say, “Oh, I talk about that in my new book!”
Last night I saw something on 60 Minutes that was particularly compelling…and it’s why I’m driving you crazy on a Monday 🙂
There was a story about GM and Ford, and how they’re using their extensive assembly lines not to produce cars, but to mass produce ventilators. The whole segment was about the swift shift in their businesses and how they made it happen.
There was one point when Phil Kienle, GM’s VP of Manufacturing for North America, got on a flight to Seattle with three of his top engineers to meet with Ventec, a small ventilator manufacturer.
He said to the engineers:
“I want you to have the mindset of, ‘What if your wife, your parents, or one of your children had the COVID disease and absolutely needed one of these ventilators. How far would you go to get this thing into production? How fast would you move?'”
By the end of the weekend, they were already sourcing the 400 different components they needed to produce ventilators, calling it a “miracle.”
Much of our motivation comes from asking ourselves better questions. As a leader, Phil could have said, “We really should do this,” or “There are a lot of people that want our help.”
Where a “should” and a “want” become a MUST, is when you connect it to something deep and meaningful to you.
It requires asking a better question.
As a shameless plug, in the book I refer to this as manufacturing internal urgency and raising psychological necessity, both key strategies for inspiring peak performance as a leader.
I know you’re out there doing great work and you don’t need to be mass producing ventilators to be included in that category. Simply steal Phil’s phrase and insert your product, program, service or solution in place of ventilators.
If YOU knew somebody special in your life absolutely needed what you have to offer, how far would you go to make it happen? How fast would you move?
That is how we Outperform.
Have a great week,