A common misconception with the adage “If you’re not growing, you’re dying” is that growth is the ultimate goal. To be bigger and better than the next guy is NOT the objective. True evolution is not growth for growth’s sake. It’s easy for organizations to lose focus and forget that we’re not competing with other contenders in the industry. They are not our opponents.
We’re competing with our own personal best, so we can continue to improve service and protect and support the valuable team we’ve built. The success of others in the industry does not diminish our ability to flourish. But we have to look at growth as a component of accomplishing our ultimate vision of the future.
Never Satisfied with Business as Usual
The success of EPM lies in our ability to evolve, and as we do that, we’re constantly course-correcting. We will never be comfortable with business as usual. A year ago, we thought we were doing great, and we were, but there’s still much room for improvement. There’s always room to improve 1% every day, including not being satisfied with the initiatives we’ve already rolled out to set us apart from the crowd. A good idea can’t be great unless it evolves with the organization, with our industry, and with the vision and mission remaining our true north. Though our internal initiatives have had growth and depth, there is always room for us to improve them.
Equipping our Teams to Empower People More
Proper execution is a data and information game. We don’t have the complete picture if we don’t have buy-in and participation from the teams that execute our vision daily. Streamlining how we do things is not the end goal, just as smooth operations aren’t the end goal. The goal is to improve service to our teams and community to promote long-term sustainability, success, and satisfaction. We improve our capabilities to diagnose problems early, serve our teams, help sustain their endurance, and upgrade their capabilities and performance capacity, so we are in the best position to empower our partners and communities.
Protecting our Most Valuable Assets
It’s a waste of time to compare ourselves or compete with other businesses. We compete with ourselves at our best and find ways to keep striving toward that mission. We don’t embrace growth for growth’s sake, especially in this market. Still, we look at how we can grow in ways that help us serve our communities for the long term without putting our teams and individuals at risk through downsizing, culture fit issues, or dissatisfaction because they feel their voices drowned out. We want to grow the organization, but it has to be worth the investment; the hardest and most important part of the equation is protecting the culture as we grow and evolve.