Recently read What Silicon Valley Can Learn From Bill Walsh’s The Score Takes Care of Itself. Lots of great takeaways, for example this one on OKR’s and goalsetting:
But what Bill Walsh correctly points out is that the ultimate outcome metric that you are so focused on in your OKRs is not in-fact in your control. Many of the inputs to that outcome are in your control. But certainly not the outcome itself. And so what Bill is saying is that an over-fixation on that outcome metric actually doesn’t help you get there. You should instead focus on the part that you can control. And when you do this well, the score (the ultimate outcome metric you care about) takes care of itself.
This illustrates Bill Walsh’s style to focus on the inputs (what you can directly control) vs. outputs.
When you start to put these elements of Bill’s leadership style together, you start to see how it differs from the conventional wisdom. Bill encourages you to focus on the inputs and the process instead of the ultimate outcomes as the outcomes are not in your control. Bill expects leaders to be functional experts in the roles on their team in order to develop the Standard of Performance. These leaders are not just people managers. They are the very best at what they do. And they develop a powerful system, via the Standard of Performance and a passion for teaching, of inculcating their team to make them the very best at their roles. But unlike the benevolent dictator model, Bill certainly doesn’t encourage you to call all the shots yourself. But instead to build up the team and the team culture to be able to do so.