Early in my career, I recognized certain universal principles as powerful tools for self-realization. As I began to apply these principles in my life, I saw an improvement in my relationships with family, friends and co-workers. In 2005, I had the distinct pleasure of studying with David Dibble, a successful businessman, corporate leader and teacher. David is the creator of the New Agreements Systems-Based Management model. NASBM teaches systems based improvement techniques to leaders at all levels, and is based upon a unique combination of systems thinking, professional growth, and personal growth.
Systems based management techniques (Deming, p. 1982) and (Senge, p. 1990) are not new. They are used extensively by top ranking organizations and taught at prestigious universities such as Harvard, Yale and MIT. The New Agreements method, incorporates systems-based management with tools and techniques aimed at increasing the emotional intelligence quotient of the entire organization, resulting in a high level of integrity in every interaction. The result is both an increase in performance and employee satisfaction. Since becoming certified as a NASBM trainer in 2005, I have incorporated this method into my work with several different organizations, with significant measurable results.
New Agreements Systems-Based Management Model
New Agreements Systems-Based Management addresses four critical areas:
- Top Line: Uniting leadership
- Systems Line: Supporting people to be successful by identifying and resolving key system issues
- People Line: Bringing meaning, energy, and joy to work
- Bottom Line: Creating measurabl results.
The New Agreements™ are much more than another laundry list of things to do. They are a comprehensive roadmap to a more evolved way of being for leaders and organizations; thus dramatically changing the experience of work for people in the organization, as well as its customers and suppliers. In the process, the people involved are inspired to carry these changes back to their families and loved ones. Life is experienced differently. However, feeling inspired by your work is not enough. The organization must perform at higher levels, too. When practiced every day, The New Agreements ensure improvement “beyond all expectations”.
Many workplace behaviors are rooted in fear. Fear makes us feel that we need to exert control over ourselves, and others, and control stifles the human spirit. If this is the pervading culture in your organization, and you desire a change; it is critical to shift the paradigm from fear to love. As a leader, when you love your people, you'll love your work.
- 90/10 Rule: 90% of the results being created in the workplace are a function of the systems in which people work, not the efforts of the people.
- 80/20 Rule: 80% of the results are created by 20% of the variables; focus on the critical 20%
- 50/50 Rule: There are two factors in improving any organization, one is transforming systems,the other is transforming people, both are equally important.
Serving Others Is True Leadership. The workplace is alive because it is made up of people. New Agreements™ leaders commit to loving, supporting, and serving their people, which equates to; loving, supporting and serving the organization.
Identify key metrics (80/20) such as partner satisfaction, revenue and profitability. Measure and record your progress. Course correct as necessary.
The New Agreements - A Conscious Leaders Guide
FIRST NEW AGREEMENT
Find Your Purpose
Most people are pulled to the workplace with some sense of purpose. For many, the purpose and energy for their work become dulled or even lost in today’s stress-filled workplace. There is a part of each of us that yearns to be energized— to go to work and to feel that we have made a difference at the end of the day. A conscious leader will work at defining and connecting with a higher purpose for work. The leader's connection to purpose will energize staff at all levels and inspire them to discover their own higher purpose in the workplace.
SECOND NEW AGREEMENT
Grow and Serve the Frontline Staff
Leaders and managers, in particular, must integrate this Agreement into their leadership styles. The challenges and opportunities to improve quality and customer satisfaction are best understood by the staff and employees who are directly involved in the work. When leaders focus on growing and serving their frontline people, the frontline staff can focus on improving systems, growing skill-sets and serving customers, thereby promoting a culture of continuous improvement. Improvement in financial performance through cost reduction, is a natural byproduct of growing and serving the frontlines in this way.
THIRD NEW AGREEMENT
Be a Systems Thinking Leader
It’s not enough to be familiar with systems-based quality improvement. We must begin to THINK in a systems-based way. It is well documented that in excess of 90% of the results we produce in the workplace, both good and not so good, is a function of the systems in which people work, NOT the efforts of the people. Non-systems thinking leaders at work wrongly tend to fault staff for recurring problems over which those people have little control. Worse, the solution to problems focuses on behavioral changes, which, over time have little possibility of improving results. A systems thinking leader knows exactly what to do to solve problems or improve performance of the organization.
FOURTH NEW AGREEMENT
Practice a Little Everyday
If we desire to learn and make new skill sets a part of how we operate in the workplace, we must practice. Learning to be a conscious leader is no different. Applied practice naturally moves principles and tools from concept to consistent and measurable action, and finally from “doing” to “being.” Great achievements become reality through small actions taken every day. A conscious leader emerges from a little practice every day.