Benjamin Franklin once said, "Drive thy Business, or it will drive thee". Taking a few moments with the team at the beginning of every day to shine the light on hot opportunities, critical issues, and bottlenecks can often make the difference between chasing activities and managing activities.
I was introduced to this tool years ago by Verne Harnish when I attended the MIT Birthing of Giants seminar. I have used it over the years in several of my businesses, but found it most valuable in periods of intense activity and high growth. Many industry leaders, such as J&J and Ritz Carlton, leverage this tool to boost their productivity and maximize team collaboration. Verne describes in his book, "Mastering the Rockefeller Habits", how John D. Rockefeller had lunch with his top team every day and insisted it was crucial in Standard Oil's worldwide success.
You can google "daily huddle" to get different perspectives on use of this tool, but I've found the following few rules work for us:
- The same, short agenda every day. Ours is 1) hot opportunities, 2) critical issues, 3) bottlenecks. You might substitute one of these with daily metrics if that's applicable. We review our metrics together once a week.
- Limit each participant's inputs to no more than 2 minutes. Issues are not intended to be resolved in the huddle, just ID'd for later follow-up by those involved.
- Meet the same time in the morning every day. We do ours at 8:33 a.m.
Service-as-a-Product gives us the process and infrastructure to run a great business. But our daily huddle provides us collaborative adaptability with the pace and rhythm our growth demands.