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The Ideal Project .. Leadership Required

Jun 1, 2019 6:10:06 PM / by Travis Jacobs

shared leadership


Extreme Ownership .. Critical For Success


The "Ideal" Project has 4 pieces

  1. Leadership & Communication
  2. Who ,,, What ... Why ... How ... Where
  3. Neutralizing Threats & Eliminating Waste
  4. Autopsies Without Blame



Ideal Project



The Talking Football is a 3 part system

 Part 1. The Talking Football

 Part 2a.  Who's On First

 Part 2b.  The Pink Elephant

 Part 3. Red Flags

             a. Threats

             b. Waste

             c. The Stop Doing List


Which project would you rather work on and be a part of ...

The Typical Project ... which is a nightmare and a death spiral ...

The Ideal Project ... smart people who trust & respect each other solving complex problems with great leadership & communication.


The CEO Challenge is one method of getting closer to the Ideal Project.  Your people will think for themselves if you stop doing it for them and treating them like children. 


The Typical Project never turns out well ... it is very costly from a financial perspective ... from a morale perspective ... shoving junk products down your customers throats that they don't want or need doesn't end well for your company.


yin yangThe typical project is the compliment to the ideal project ... there is a Yin Yang relationship between the two.


Effective Leadership & Honest Communication is a much more effective strategy ... than a tyrannical dictatorship ... treating people like prison inmates ... or worse.

The Talking Football is a simple and very effective tool to increase honest communication.

In order to build trust & respect you need open and honest communication ... but in order to have open & honest communication you need trust and respect ... you have to start somewhere ...

The Thinking Hats are a simple and artificial method to have the entire team "thinking" in the "same direction". To look at the situation from many different perspectives at the same time.

Commanders Intent is an effective way to to increase productivity ... and ultimately success. It increases the teams ability to think through complex situations ... solve problems faster.

Commanders Intent & Extreme Ownership go hand in hand. If you want your team to take responsibility and ownership of their job as well as the task at hand ... you can't crucify them for every little mistake that they make. If you always blame the team for their mistakes ... they will stop making mistakes ... they will stop making decisions. They will FORCE YOU as their LEADER to make all the DECISIONS & all of the MISTAKES.

I know what you are thinking ... my team is lazy and incompetent ... I'll just fire them ALL & replace them ... 3 months later when you have the same problem ... fire them all and start over ... this is a viscous cycle ... a death spiral.


What To Design Is More Important Than How To Design It ...

"Who ... What ... Why ... How ... Where"

Who is the customer ...

What is the job to be done ... What will they pay for

Why is this important ...

How are we going to get there ...

Where is the Finish line ... what does winning look like ...


Bureaucracy Is Evil ...


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Autopsies Without Blame ... No scapegoating ...




Which project would you rather work on and be a part of ...


The Typical Project ... The Ugly ...

... Which is usually a death spiral ...


The Ideal Project ... The Good

... Smart people who trust & respect each other solving complex problems with great leadership & communication.


The Actual Project ... The Bad

... Is a blend of The Good ... The Ugly ...  


The CEO Challenge is the solution to the Typical Project ... unless you like failure & micromanaging your people like toddlers in a daycare center.



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Topics: Leadership, Communication, Innovation, Execution, Strategy, Tactics, Team, Winning, Purpose, Why

Travis Jacobs

Written by Travis Jacobs

Travis is the president of JA Simulations, a product design & development firm in Denver Colorado. We help clients solve problems & get to market faster with innovative & high quality products

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