Lemon #132. The 4 disciplines of execution

Lemon #132. The of execution

While reading Deep Work from Cal Newport we learned about the 4 Disciplines of Execution.

The 4 Disciplines of Execution (4DX) is a framework based on the fundamental premise that execution is more difficult than strategizing.

Discipline #1: Focus on the Wildly Important

The more you try to do, the less you accomplish. Execution should be aimed at a small number of wildly important goals.

Identify a small number of ambitious outcomes to pursue with your deep work hours. For example, to “spend time working deeply” does not motivate. Why not “publish 1 book a year”.

Discipline #2: Act on the Lead Measures

Once you have identified a wildly important goal, you need to measure your success. There are two types of metrics for this purpose:

  • Lag Measures: Describe the thing that you are trying to improve.
  • Lead Measures: Measure the new behaviors that will drive success on the lag measures.

Lag measures come too late to change your behavior. When you receive them, the performance that drove them is already in the past.

For example, if your goal is to increase customer satisfaction in a retail, the relevant lag measure is your customer satisfaction score. This score is received after the service is provided. From a lead measure perspective, you could measure the number of free samples received by customers. As you increase the number of free samples, the lag measure will (likely) improve as well.

The Lead measure in Deep Work should be “Time spent in a state of deep work dedicated toward your wildly important goal”.

Discipline #3: Keep a Compelling Scoreboard

Have a public place to record and track the lead measures. It also provides a reinforcing source of motivation. Once the team notices their success with a lead measure, they become invested in perpetuating this performance.

Discipline #4: Create a Cadence of Accountability

The final step to help maintain a focus on lead measure is to put in place a rhythm of regular and frequent meeting of any team that owns a wildly important goal. This review should be condensed to only a few minutes, but it must be regular to its effect to be felt.

Cal Newport @ Deep Work.

Josep Guitart

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