The Chain of Success

Beat the Odds on Implementation Success

Ever wonder why two thirds of all projects fail to meet expectations?  All it takes is one weak link.  With this in mind, we created the Chain of Success.

Consider software implementations.  The best software code in the world is useless if the training and communication aren’t sufficient.  And without management engagement and support, all the work on the other links is utter and complete waste!

There is a classic human trap aided by using the Chain of Success with your team.  We work extra hard on the links we love and shy away from the painful ones like engaging distracted managers or task accountability.  It is important to “shine a light” on these weak links to ensure success of the whole project.

How to use the tool:

We suggest that you keep it simple with a 30 minute dry erase board exercise as early in the project as possible.  Here are the basic steps of this activity:

1)   During a team meeting, draw a picture of an empty chain on a dry erase board

2)   Challenge the project team to brainstorm 5 to 7 KEY links

3)   Test that each link, alone, is “Essential but not sufficient”

4)   Rate the strength of each link on a scale from 1 to 10.

(“10” is titanium and “1” is cheap plastic)

5)   Identify who is accountable for the strength of each link

6)   Develop action items and additional resources needed to support weak links

7)   Warn the owners of the strongest links that they may be overworking the area

8)   Document your chain use it for ensuring comprehensive updates

The Chain of Success is a simple way for a team to analyze a system of interdependent components.  It pulls systems thinking out of the clouds and into a usable model to help you beat the odds!

In the comments below, tell us what business links you love to work on most and which ones you shy away from.