This post is part of the 📖 Nine Lies About Work series.


Today, I am still reading the LIE #2: The Best Plan Wins chapter of book Nine Lies About Work written by Authors Marcus Buckingham & Ashley Goodall.

TL;DR! 💬

There are some big lies, distortions, faulty assumptions, wrong thinking that we encounter every time we show up for work. Nine lies, to be exact. They cause dysfunction and frustration, ultimately resulting in workplaces that are a pale shadow of what they could be.

By reading Nine Lies About Work, you can get past the lies and discover what’s real. These freethinking leaders recognize the power and beauty of our uniqueness. They know that emergent patterns are more valuable than received wisdom and that evidence is more powerful than dogma.


Yesterday, I started reading the LIE #2: The Best Plan Wins chapter from Nine Lies About Work book.

Chapter #2

LIE #2: The Best Plan Wins

Many plans, particularly those created in large organizations, are overly generalized, quickly obsolete, and frustrating to those asked to execute them.

Instead, it’s far better to coordinate your team’s efforts in real-time, relying heavily on each unique team member’s informed, detailed intelligence.

This is not to say that planning is utterly useless. When you plan, all you’ve done is understand the scale and nature of your team’s challenges. You’ll have learned little about what to do to make things better.

What can you do as a team leader to make things better to create an intelligence system for your team?

  1. Liberate as much information as you possibly can.

    Think all the sources of information you have, and make as many of them as possible available to your team on demand.

    Make sure your team is swimming in real-time information all the time.

  2. Observe to see which data your people find helpful.

  3. Trust your people to make sense of the data.

This leads us to one of the most important insights shared by the best team leaders: frequency trumps quality.

The best team leaders realize that it’s less important that each check-in is perfectly executed than that it happens every week.

In the intelligence business, frequency is king.

The more frequently and predictably you check in with your people or meet with your team—the more you offer your real-time attention to the reality of their work—the more performance and engagement you will get.


Key Takeaways

  • Plans scope the problem, not the solution.

  • It’s not true that the best plan wins. The best intelligence indeed wins.

  • In the intelligence business, frequency is king.


That’s it for today. Tomorrow, we will read the next chapter LIE #3: The best companies cascade goals.

What lies we've learned so far?
  1. LIE #1: People care which company they work for

    We, as team members, want our team leader to make us feel part of something bigger, that he/she shows us how what we are doing together is important and meaningful. You as a team leader make us feel that you can see us, and connect to us, and care about us, and challenge us in a way that recognizes who we are as individuals.

  2. LIE #2: The Best Plan Wins

    It’s far better to coordinate your team’s efforts in real-time, relying heavily on each unique team member’s informed, detailed intelligence. You’ll have to sit down and survey your team members and make your plan.

    The more frequently and predictably you check in with your people or meet with your team—the more you offer your real-time attention to the reality of their work—the more performance and engagement you will get.

    It’s not true that the best plan wins. The best intelligence indeed wins.

Nine Lies about Work

Author(s): Marcus Buckingham

Author(s): Ashley Goodall

Short Blurb: How do you get to what's real? Your organization's culture is the key to its success. Strategic … Read more
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Part 5 of 23 in the 📖 Nine Lies About Work book series.

Series Start | Nine Lies About Work - Day 4 | Nine Lies About Work - Day 6



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