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When things crop up it’s essential to be able to be able to respond dynamically. Getting the problem solved quickly will get you back to running your business faster. But, if the same problems crop up on a regular basis, that’s a longer term problem.

What defines a quick win?

Something quantifies as a quick win if it is a solution to a problem or the plugging of a gap via immediate action and therefore, immediate impact.

It is a short-term gain that has been met by actioning something straight away, in order to make an instant change. It’s often done with little consideration for the long term or ‘the bigger picture’.

This isn’t always a bad thing, in fact it can sometimes be the best way forward, as long as it’s not a decision made for the wrong reasons.

The quick wins paradox

The quick win mentality is  discussed quite extensively in the Harvard Business Review and you know if those guys are talking about it, it must be serious. They coined the the term Quick Wins Paradox, which explores how quick wins can initially appear attractive but often present hurdles further down the line.

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As part of their research, they explore the connection between leadership and the quest for quick wins and in doing so, identified five problematic behaviours:

The danger of quick wins over long term results

The appeal of taking the easy-fix can sometimes distract from a bigger, better solution which needs a bit more effort. Sadly, fooling yourself with a false sense of short-term security can prevent true growth, innovation and future-proofing.

It can happen at every level of an organisation, especially if there’s a lot of pressure to produce results.

How to combat the quick win conundrum

Setting realistic (but still ambitious) targets can help to facilitate a greater focus on long-term progress, rather than short-term success. Getting the company culture on board with this is essential.

Use KPIs to measure progress along the way, and help staff stay motivated by rewarding targets along the way towards larger projects.

Learn more about our Pandle software, and how it can help you measure and hit your targets.

About The Author

Stephanie Whalley

Serial snacker, compulsive cocktail sipper and full time wordsmith with a penchant for alliteration, all things marketing and pineapple on pizza.

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