Momentum is Important to Any Organisation
Momentum is called by some ‘The BIG MO’ and should be treasured like gold by any leader.
With momentum everything looks and feels better than it really is, and without it everything looks and feels much worse than it really is.
Momentum is a leader’s friend!
Without momentum everything, even small problems become magnified. like a stationary train can be prevented from rolling forward by placing a 20 cent coin on the track against a wheel. With it everything is so much easier, even larger problems can be solved relatively easily. E.g. the same train moving at 100 Km/h would not be stopped if a brick wall was built across the track.
Momentum creates the sense that things are happening reflected in comments such as: “We are going places”, “We’re getting results”, “We can do this”, “We’re growing” and “We’re making a difference!” These comments are signs of increasing morale.
Lack of momentum is the sense that everything is hard and is reflected in comments such as: “Why is it so difficult to get anything done around here?” “Nothing ever happens round here”, “Things seem to be falling apart”, “Don’t get your hopes up”, “What’s the point of trying?”, “Good luck with that” (cynically spoken) and “Here we go again”. These comments are signs of poor morale.
10 Things I Know About Momentum…..
- A prerequisite for momentum is a leader with clearly articulated vision who unites people to work towards achieving measurable outcomes.
- Momentum is built by taking action steps every day, even little ones, which take you forward.
- It takes a lot of energy and discipline to get momentum going – ask anyone who has started a business – but after a period (usually months) of consistently doing all the little things that move you in the desired direction, it builds.
- Momentum is a bit like compound interest; it’s cumulative and it increases slowly at first and then, exponentially.
- One of a leader’s main roles is to oversee increasing momentum. To do this they must regularly look up from the day to day details and see what will take the organisation forward right now. A leader also needs to ensure that major obstacles are noted and avoided.
- One of the ways you know you have momentum is that there is little or no resistance to change within your organisation. Change will be seen as normal. This is more difficult in older organisations with a longer history but it can be done.
- The momentum you have today is the result of all your efforts up until now. If you stop taking initiative your momentum will carry you forward for a while but will eventually slow down.
- Momentum lost is VERY HARD to regain. It often requires MORE energy than starting again.
- Momentum is essential to any organisation that wants to be effective.
- The key to establishing momentum lies with the leaders inner circle (management team) fully supporting leader and owning the program
Having been the leader of a large not-for-profit organistion for 25 years I know a lot about momentum and how important it is. A bad week with a few setbacks is easily shaken off when there is momentum as you are able to lift people towards your next good result. However, when everything is a struggle even one small setback can be totally demoralising.
How have you been able to build momentum? Love to hear your story….
This was a fantastic explanation of Momentum. Its been helpful to see what occurs as a result of poor momentum. I can see how in organizations I have worked with they have called a lack of momentum something else, usually attached to blaming performance – but it is so much bigger than that!
Great word on momentum John. It’s been said that momentum is the great exaggerator. Great momentum means it may not be as great as it looks and no momentum makes it looks worse than it probably is. With that said, I’d sure rather have forward momentum than none at all.
Absolutely agree with you Dale. May you always know what you can do as the leader in order to have forward momentum in your fantastic organisation.