Yes, that sounds like a Tom Peters book….but I am referring to a frame of mind. “Pursuing excellence”…or “sharpening the saw” (Stephen Covey language) …or “continuous improvement” all describe a fundamental attitude that is the secret to growth and success. This is true in business, church, and even our personal life.
This week, I participated in a debrief meeting with other leaders from our “Feed the Kids” Christmas event (where 12Stone Church gave away meals to over 6,000 families). During our 90 minutes together, we dissected every dropped ball and missed opportunity in that event that we could remember. Here are some thoughts that struck me after the meeting:
- The original event was a complete success. Everyone involved was pleased with how it ran and very few people noticed anything go awry. It would have been easy for us to chalk up a “win” and move on without a debrief.
- This was the 4th such debrief meeting. Three other meetings have been held with various leaders associated with this event. Overall, we’ve easily invested 60 hours of leader’s time in the debrief activity (more than most people spent on the event itself).
- The participants of this meeting reviewed notes from the other debrief meetings…to see what we could learn from the other perspectives.
How much time do you spend debriefing after a project or event? Do you keep notes on what worked and what needed improvement? Do you learn from mistakes made and use them to improve on the next project? Do you keep pushing the bar (of expectations) higher after you complete a project?
Or, do you just keep delivering the same level of performance over and over again?