Part 5 of a 6 part blog series on developing a culture that breeds success. Make sure you add the RSS feed to your reader so you don’t miss anything in this series!

Whether you are a golfer, boxer or baseball player you know the importance of following through on a swing or a punch. You can train and prepare; go through all the miniscule techniques that help you master your art. If you don’t follow through, it all goes to waste. A culture of success is no different. We must follow through on what we’re doing.

Personally, I love the creative element of what I do. The brainstorming. The possibilities. It’s almost like a drug to me. There is something amazing about putting something together that has life and purpose from nothing more than a notion or suggestion. It’s truly exciting for me. After that stage passes, I have a tendency to want to delegate and hand things off. I love to create vision and ideas, then allow someone else to manage what I perceive to be mundane and boring stuff.

I used to think it was a reflection of my ability and identity, but it was more of a reflection of my temperament and personality. It’s not an excuse to ignore the need to follow through, just that I need to make sure it’s managed properly. Bit by bit, I am continually learning how to be better at following through and it makes such a difference in what I do.

There are some details that I am able to hand off to others who are just as excited about doing them as I am about the whole creative/idea process. No matter how it is done, keeping a watchful eye on the final details is absolutely essential to success. It must be part and parcel of your culture as an organization or team. As a leader, you’re not personally responsible for doing these last final bits, but you are responsible for making sure they get done.

Know your team and those around you. If you’re anything like me, find those who enjoy following the mind numbing minutia trail to the end. You can hate it as much as I do, just don’t ignore it. Personally I think it’s of the devil, but it must be done so I give it the proper attention and weight. It is the culture I want saturating my business because I know it fosters success. I’ve seen too many clients suffer the consequences of pushing these things to the periphery only to have them fly back in their face like they were tied to a rubber band. Not pretty.

Having watchful eyes and open communication will help with focusing on following through on the necessary things. Make follow through a priority as you develop your culture and those who resonate with the passion of playing with details will surface quickly, if given an opportunity and a voice. These people will be your best ally in sealing the deal for a culture of success.

  • Steve G

    William –

    Thank you for your insight on Leadership Follow Through. Your analogy using golf and boxing was a great visual. I thought your personal experiences were right on. For me, Follow Through and/or Follow Up, demonstrate the importance of a task or specific direction a leader has provided to their team. The team might not think it is not important if the leader doesn’t follow up on the task.

    My experience has shown me that besides laying out the program or the plan, Follow Through/Follow Up on the plan is key to success. I believe it also shows ownership of the plan.

    As you stated, “…As a leader, you’re not personally responsible for doing these last final bits, but you are responsible for making sure they get done.”

    Thanks again the read


  • Thanks for adding the aspect of showing ownership and importance to the plan or initiative regarding follow through/follow up. Very insightful Steve. I appreciate you taking time to share your thoughts and perspective! Have a smashing rest of the week.