Sunday, June 6, 2010

Comply vs Complete: The difference towards success

Compliance is a bad word in professional environment. It evokes feelings of mass-uniformity, unquestioned obedience, silence, fake complicity and non-inquisitive mind. Compliance characterizes a single risk entity (decision holder is solely responsible for all good/bad) while every one is safe. Compliance is essential too. Without compliance, you cannot deliver; without compliance you cannot expect support; without compliance you cannot make better relations with people.

To enable a change initiative, you need to have change agents who go beyond compliance and seek completeness in the initiative. To achieve a shift in working and thinking styles, it is important to drive for strategic and tactical compliance in same group and in every change agent identified. This is the difference between compliance and completeness (NOTE: "and" is the key here). Strategic and tactical compliance ensures completeness and commitment to the cause. This allows change agents to have an immersive and bearing attitude to see through the success as a shared exercise.

Strategic compliance is to say "yes" to the initiative and contribute in words. Loose words, meeting room exuberance, less of action on ground and support. Tactical compliance is to "take the first step" and then make successive steps. One or the other is what you choose when you are not sure and give a half-hearted support. Tacitly, you know it is going nowhere and wish you are left off the hook. So you comply with the thought or you simply do a bit of your job to escape the wrath. In short, you comply than complete. Factory model is built for compliance (either strategic or tactical), while armed forces are built around completeness (strategic and tactical).

A reason why Vision and Mission remain on paper is a case of strategic vs tactical compliance than strategic and tactical completeness. A vision and mission is strategic, but the tactical approval in every transaction is observed from the same group that put them in place. A loose compliance will reveal that there is not enough commitment to the zeal expected and attributed to the change initiative.

Look out for agents who can complete the strategic and tactical initiatives through their active participation in thoughts, words and deeds. They are your success agents to protect and groom them. They are your cultural ambassadors who needs promotion and visibility.

Agree ? Disagree ? Need your comments.

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