The Art of Letting Go

Andy Jordan is President of Roffensian Consulting Inc., an Ontario, Canada-based management consulting firm with a comprehensive project management practice. Andy always appreciates feedback and discussion on the issues raised in his articles and can be reached at andy.jordan@roffensian.com. Andy's new book Risk Management for Project Driven Organizations is now available.

In business environments that demand rapid response and adapting, leaders need decision-makers throughout the organization. But trading control for agility requires even more leadership skills. Here are ideas and actions to diversify and accelerate the decision-making process, which will improve short- and long-term performance.

Business agility is becoming increasingly important as organizations recognize the need to evolve if they are to remain competitive in a fast-paced, global, technology-driven environment. Business agility is all about that process of making an organization more swift to respond to change and opportunity, and more capable of absorbing the changes that come from such a response. To achieve it, fundamental elements of how organizations are run have to change, and that can be scary for leaders.

Diversified empowerment

One critical element of business agility is the empowerment of employees throughout the organization to initiate changes. Historically, if a solution or opportunity was identified it would be analyzed and reviewed by a small group and the direct manager. If it was deemed worthy of attention, it would slowly make its way up the organization until a final decision was made. How high something had to go before a decision would depend on how big the change was — the more impactful, the higher it would likely need to go.

An obvious …

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"Drawing on my fine command of language, I said nothing."

- Mark Twain

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