Outcomes are determined in the micro decisions and actions, much more than they are in macro big ones.
It is important to think big and to aim high and visualize macro outcomes as these outline the goals to get to and greatness to aim for. However it is also critical to know that results are reached by the micro actions, decisions and learning that we do each and everyday. Vision lies in the big, but success lies in the small building blocks. Or as I prefer to say we aim for macro goals but achieve them via the micro actions, improvements and decisions we make each day.
Thinking of things in macros and micros helps a manager.
Macros are the end outcomes we want to get to, be that a number target or overall performance level goal. As managers we should be pushing our team to aim for macros, to visualize them and commit to achieving them. However we should do effective backward planning and identify clearly the micro steps that we need to do to reach our our end targets. We should establish the effective work habits that trigger us to do micro actions consistently. Day in day out what staff should focus on is the micros, the actions to do today, the improvements (on a micro level) that need to be achieved to get to the macro goals of the future.
Day to day staff should focus on micros.
Macro planning and visualizing but with micro daily focus helps staff to focus on the achievable today and connect it to the larger end goals and targets that must be reached in the future. Often macros can seem too distant, too impersonal and sometimes almost impossible to achieve but a micro step or change is achievable today and when put in building blocks can lead towards the macro goal in a manageable step by step process. In the learning pyramid we saw how macro professional improvement is only reached by understanding the learning process of the micro skill sets. The same goes for numerical work targets, we set our macro yearly goal and then work back to set our monthly and weekly sub targets but most of all for our planning to be effective we must have connected out macro goal to micro daily actions and improvement of today or this moment.
The micros are the actions, decisions and improvements we should be doing today.
So from now on make sure to give your team macro visions and objectives but plan out so they focus and work daily on micro goals and improvements. If they get dishearten with the purpose of the small micro action, remind them of the part it plays towards the macro target but then likewise if the macro improvement or progress seems too difficult for your team to achieve, leave clear that all they need to do and focus on today is that micro step you set out. Focusing on micros goes hand in hand with having the inside out attitude of accountability. As the saying goes: “if you put the man together first, the world with come together just fine” the same goes for your work “if you do the micros first, your macro will come together just fine”.
What to do?
Think about a macro end goal you have, be it a work or personal one. Now list all the micro parts you need to do to achieve that macro goal? How committed are you to the micro parts?