Accelerate everything (using WHO/DO)

4th June 2024

We all work on stuff that doesn’t go as fast as we want…

  1. People ghost us
  2. Sales that take too long
  3. Projects that drag on

… which means we meet with colleagues, to update each other on the (slow/no) progress:

  1. Update Meetings, where we tell them that we’ve been ghosted
  2. Sales Meetings, where we update each other on deals’ progress (or lack of)
  3. Project Meetings, where we explain delays

But these updates tend to be:

  1. Historic
  2. Long
  3. Dull

However, they’d be much better if they were

  1. Future-focused – what will we do next to accelerate things?
  2. Short
  3. Interesting

A simple way to achieve this is to focus on the…


So, to move things forwards, WHO (which person) do we want to DO (which action) next?

For example, if someone introduced their update about a sales deal like this…

‘My WHO/DO is that I want (WHO) my contact Jemima to (DO) reply to the email I sent last week’

…everyone could then advise new ways we could ensure Jemima replies! For example, their advice might be things like:

  • Contact Jemima using a different channel – phone call etc
  • Escalate it – ask your boss to speak to Jemima’s boss
  • Find a mutual connection, and ask them to speak nicely to Jemima about you, and advise she gets back to you
  • Message Jemima, telling her you have some new ideas about what you’ve previously discussed, and that you’d like to explore them with her (this might be a good idea, since your old ideas weren’t motivating her to reply!)
  • Send her a text – ‘Hi Jemima. I’m conscious we keep missing each other. To avoid us playing telephone tennis, I’ll call you at 4pm today. Please text a different time if 4pm doesn’t work’
  • Etc etc

This WHO/DO is a much better way to do the meeting. Because we have achieved our three goals:

  1. Future-focused – everything is focused on the action to take next, to drive things forward
  2. Short – it’s a punchy discussion about next steps, not a long history lesson about why things have slowed
  3. Interesting – it’s more fun when everyone interacts and contributes

So, what is my WHO/DO of this Tip…?

Action Point

…my ask is that (WHO) you (DO) this:

  1. Identify the things that are going slower than you want them to
  2. For each, identify the WHO/DO
  3. Find your best ways to persuade the WHO to do the DO!

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