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Three Little Pigs: Not Just A Children’s Story

Three Little Pigs: Not Just A Children’s Story

This is a great and timeless story. You know, the three pigs, each of whom builds a house of different materials, straw, sticks and bricks. And, of course, the big, bad wolf blows down the straw house and the stick house, but, is not able to blow down the brick house.

The third pig who built the brick house invested more time and planning into building his house and his brother pigs spent as little time as possible to toss up their flimsy homes.

The moral is pretty straight forward. It takes time and effort to do something of quality.

The same is true for us as leaders and professionals.

It is all too easy for us to toss out quick and easy plans and programs. Many times we get pressured to do just that by customers, be it employees or other leaders. In today’s business environment, there is so much pressure for instant results. At times, we pressure ourselves by over promising and then under delivering. We then rush to deliver, and deliver less than optimal results.

However, if we buckle to these kinds of pressures, we all pay a price. A small wind will blow the plan or program apart. Our credibility suffers. Our customers suffer.

I am not advocating taking long, complex approaches to delivering outcomes. I am advocating taking appropriate time to deliver quality plans and programs that will sustain the test of time.

Time is an important aspect of making plans. If the first two little pigs were making temporary buildings for a short term holiday or a summer vacation, then their choices may have been good ones. However, in the story they are making a home, an outcome that requires sustainability. In their case, taking a bit longer to build a strong, lasting structure designed to withstand the test of time and detractors would have been a better approach.

Your human resource plans will be tested by complainers, by the passage of time, by unintended consequences and by use and abuse. Build them strong. Take time to find or make your own bricks. Take time to plan your structure. In fact, get some customer input. Then build your brick house.

Do you discern the difference between work that can be done quickly, in the short term versus that which is long term?

Do you take time to plan?

Do you invest resources into your planning process?

Do you get input from other members of the team?

Do you get input from key customers?


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Philip Espinosa partners with people to deliver value: People | Partnerships | Value serves as his tag line. As a strategic human resources leader, he believes that service starts with the customer. His book "Deliver Excellent Customer Service with a SNAP” helps others drive customer engagement using simple and consistent communication strategies. A second book titled "Focus On Your Success - 24 Simple Insights To Drive Daily Achievement" (ebook) helps working professionals view their daily choices through a different perspective. In addition to his writing, Philip works with strategic human capital initiatives and has delivered successful results over a career spanning more than 25 years.

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