What’s the most critical thing your team has to get done today? If you haven’t thought about that question today, you probably don’t know. In that case, you’re still working a plan you made sometime in the past, and some factors may have changed.
Change is most likely to come from two kinds of things: opportunities and crises. The common characteristic of the two is they can pop up at any time, and they don’t care about your plans.
So you need to have a habit and a process to keep up with the pace of change in your organization. My habit is to spend the last 15 minutes of the day reviewing the plan for the rest of the week. To know if changes are needed, I look at new orders in the system, and communication from salesmen, owners or key managers.
It’s as simple as this: has demand (what we need to do) or capacity (the resources we have to do it) changed? If either has, you need to rethink tomorrow’s work, and likely someone’s number one thing is going to change.
If you don’t deliberately do this, some days your team is going to miss the most important thing.