Understand your macro-environment. Sounds a bit like eat your veggies…they’re good for you.
This topic can be complicated, but it doesn’t need to be. Across Finance, HR, IT, Procurement, Marketing, Legal and Risk, ALL Business Partners are facing similar challenges as they support the business during these unpredictable times.
And whilst business demands increase in complexity, we believe there is a strong need to develop an “outside-in” understanding of the macro-world around you.
By dissecting and understanding the external macro factors that impact your company and industry, you can generate simple actionable insights that informs decision making. This sounds straightforward but there is a time and effort commitment required. And without a clear, disciplined process, you will not shift the dial.
So where do you start?
Firstly, we support BPs with a number of pragmatic frameworks, providing the structure you need to grow your macro-environment knowledge…and this includes political, legal, tech factors to name a few. The frameworks are simple to understand and a great place to start.
Secondly, identify your macro-environment knowledge gaps: speak to leaders, your Business Partner peers…understand more about their knowledge-gathering habits and what they consume and where your knowledge may need developing.
Finally, develop a targeted learning plan to build your macro-view of the world around you.
Identify just 2-3 areas of knowledge you would like to enhance.
Watch the rabbit hole here….
The sources are unlimited. Which magazines, websites, blogs, specialist industry sources, social media, mentors, podcasts and books do you consume? When? How often? How to do it sustainably?
The choices are unlimited and downright confusing. Identify the right mix of content that aligns with your professional and personal lifestyle and development needs. If you walk the dog for 30 minutes, five days a week…source and schedule a 20-minute podcast. That is 100 minutes per week or roughly 7 hours per month or 85 hours of targeted learning just walking the dog.
In the Tim Ferris book, “Tools of Titans”, Tim shares the routines and rituals of world-class performers, and targeted focused learning is a common behavioural trait for many of them.
The key point: there is time in a busy schedule…dissect your routines and find new time windows for learning. And it is about more than locking in a time. It is the slow deliberate approach that generates discipline to change your behaviour and develop new habits. Consistency is key.