When I joined Board of a 30 years old manufacturing company, I was naturally curious to know it’s history. It was a small company, mostly founder lead. Since there were no documents or presentation to go by, I had a sitting with the owner and heard the history – first hand from the man who had been responsible for the growth of the organization.
The experience revealed more than mere facts – “Moments of Glory” – MOG and what the owner valued worth-while contributions. If you have to survive in a company – you need to quickly understand what is valued there and what are MOGs in the eyes of the Boss. This chat helped me as a good starting point.
The next step was to put MOGs on a time line. That is when it started making sense! On a time line, you can easily see the gap in years between the MOGs. I probed more to fill the gaps by involving some senior employees. Some more additional data came out to fill the time-line. Discussions with the team revealed that the MOGs happened because of owner’s single handed drive to grow the company. His team contribution was missing in the growth story. It was agreed that from then on-ward, a yearly review of the performance of the company would be done in the month of December to record the current year’s MOGs and some thinking on what should be done next year. It sort of prompted the organization to develop a Strategic Plan for the New Year.
In my training sessions to corporate Leadership, I now ask each participant to draw a MOGS Time-Line (5 years) to understand what they consider MOGS! The outcome is very revealing – try it yourself!
Possible take-away from this exercise is:
- What is considered MOGs by each member of the senior leadership Team.
- How well the Team is aligned?
- Is there any Strategic Direction of the Team?
- Is the team proud of the organization’s past?
A few twists would help make this exercise more interesting. If the time line can include growth elements like Revenue / Profit, appearance of competitors on the time-line, new products added, significant improvement history of products, new offices and global spread, partnerships / acquisition history etc. – all the better. It might show relationship between MOG’s and why they happened!
Such exercises help Teams to think Strategic – easy way to align and change culture! So go ahead and Use History to Make History!