Leverage Fortune 500 Business Practices: Short Interval Management

One of the methods management consultants use to help Fortune 500 Manufacturing Companies improve their productivity is short interval management. This simple tool can be used for teams or individuals and is extremely effective for the entrepreneur with a start-up.

As any start-up owner knows time is your most valuable resource. There are a plethora of activities requiring your attention and making an effective decision about how you’ll spend your time each day will is a predictor of how successful you’ll be.

The Fortune 500 Company develops a set of goals at the beginning of each year. Each of those goals is decomposed and an approach for reaching that goal is developed. Once the approach is defined the steps to achieve that goal are listed. From this a schedule is developed.by listing the steps and the estimated amount of time planned for each step.

Since activities for multiple goals have to be completed, it’s essential to have a plan and a schedule. At the beginning of each day Fortune 500 manufacturing companies have a quick stand up meeting. In that meeting each function reports out to the others what they accomplished yesterday and what they plan to do today. This commitment allows the functional areas to stay aligned.

You can mimic this process once you’ve decided upon a clear set of goals and developed a high level approach and schedule for achieving them. At the end of each day review what you’ve accomplished against those goals, then make a decision regarding “what’s next”, and make a commitment to complete the top 3 – 5 steps the next day.

This focus keeps you from starting too many things at once and helps to keep you from procrastinating.

Published by Leah Ward-Lee

Leah Ward-Lee, the author of "$1,000 Start-Ups", is a serial micro-entrepreneur. She opened her first business at ten after lobbying for and receiving a shoe shine kit for Christmas. She pulled her wagon through the neighborhood, going door-to-door, offering to shine her neighbor’s shoes for twenty-five cents a pair. Once her wagon was full, she took the shoes home and polished them. Unfortunately that business was short-lived. She hadn’t tagged the shoes and couldn’t remember whose shoes were whose, so her dad went with her to retrace the route until every pair was returned. Since then she’s had businesses developing and teaching college courses, instructing aerobic classes, owning half a plane that was rented to a flight and maintenance school, and renting homes. She’s also owned a consignment store, a gift shop, a gift basket business, a consulting firm, hosted The Executive Toolbox (a weekly radio show), and a publishing company. She also spent twenty years in the US Army, served as the Chief Information and Technical Officer for two major insurance companies, and has a second career as a management consultant. Leah resides in Dallas, TX and on Amelia Island with Sammy and Goliath, her two rescue dogs.


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