“Anne, I just implemented this new work recording strategy as we have both union and non-union people.  Now we have a worse performance level than we have ever had, why?”

In this instance, the executive solved a symptom- how to manage what people were doing when- and create guidelines around it to track every person’s work.  But what happened with it is it brought all employees down to a base level where they were more “rewarded” by slowing down rather than working faster. 

You have to make sure you get to the root of a problem rather than the symptom.  If you solve a symptom, you create a new problem.  In the above scenario, we had to go in, figure out what she was really trying to solve and create a new path to making that happen.  We flipped it to bring the slower people up to the speed of the higher workers rather than the other way around. 

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