The 6 EOS® Components of a Healthy Organisation

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At Everest 2018, we were joined by Christian Goldmann and Alexander Celie, two Professional Implementers of EOS® (the Entrepreneurial Operating System®). The pair provided us with a presentation on what it really takes to run a healthy organisation, with a focus on the Six Key Components™ that they believe will ensure that any business can reach its full potential.

What is EOS?

EOS stands for Entrepreneurial Operating System and is a holistic approach that aims to get the most out of every corner of your business. The presentation started with an intriguing statistic, out of ten companies:

  • 7 are frustrated
  • 2 of them feel their business is going just OK
  • 1 of them thought their business was running great

Where do you see your business?

Business leaders often get swamped by the sheer number of things that need to be dealt with on any given day. By packaging these individual tasks across six key components it is possible to not only manage your business affairs but to master them. 

By making sure you have every tiny detail covered and slotted into one of these key areas, you can trust that it will be assigned and accounted for by the right members of your team (the right bums in the right seats – more on that later).

The Six Key Components that make up EOS are:

  • Vision
  • People
  • Data
  • Issues
  • Process
  • Traction®

Step 1: Vision  

Goldmann stressed the importance of core values, stating that “Core values are what define you as an organisation”. At the beginning of the EOS process, one of the most critical steps is to authentically establish what your core values are. This provides the framework to define the culture and behaviour of your business. The approach moves away from the typical marketing generated values to a set of characteristics that the organisation hires, fires and rewards by.

Once you’ve established your core values, you need to ask: what is your Core Focus™? This can be discovered by finding out what your passion is; what your businesses niche is, and most importantly, what your business is best at. Once these defining factors have risen to the surface you are then able to hone in on the core of your business and not waste unnecessary time and energy on things that don’t serve these core functions.

“What’s the big picture?” 

Where your business is going is one of the most important questions to ask yourself. By having a clear and concise answer to this question your whole organisation will benefit. The fact that you have a clearly defined overall aim for the business means that as a collective you know where you’re going; what the aims are and what you can then do to ensure this target is met, and that you achieve success as a team.

After establishing the overall vision of your business, you now want to define how you are going to get there. The destination is  known but the journey must be clearly defined if you want to achieve those goals. Goldmann explains that by having three to six things that are vitally important to achieve in the next year, you can measure the progress towards the overall vision.

“When everything is important, nothing is important”

Reducing the vision to a one-year plan allows you to create objectives for individuals to achieve. To break this down further, EOS uses ‘Rocks’ as 90-day goals that individuals are accountable for achieving. Clearly defining individual Rocks means that nothing is left undone and those responsible for their rocks are held fully accountable.

Step 2: People

The second component is the people in your organisation, with a focus on having “The right people in the right seats”. Getting the right people in your organisation is about having a team of people who resonate fully with the core values of the overall business. Having the right people is of high importance because if they align with your core values you immediately have a group who are all on the same wave length.

The two primary roles that need to be filled in any organisation using EOS are the Integrator and the Visionary. The integrator’s role is to integrate the functions of the team into a whole. The visionary has the ideas that will help guide the business in the best way possible.

Organising your organisation by function, you can establish clearly defined roles and responsibilities for each person in your team. Using the EOS accountability chart, you can see who’s in which seat; what their function in the business is; how they relate to others in the business, and what their roles are responsibilities are.  It’s important to note that the accountability isn’t an organisational chart. This chart focuses on the seats first and people second. You know those roles you have created around a person? EOS is the opposite of that.

Step 3: Data

The amount of information swirling around your organisation is almost impossible to keep track of. With new tools it is possible to harness that data and convert it meaningfully into something that can really benefit you and your team.

Using a scorecard, you can pin down exactly what numbers are important to your leadership team. This will allow you to consistently monitor how well your business is doing.  By developing the scorecard for each member of the team you can actively measure how well they are doing up against the expectations defined in line with your Core Focus and vision. 

Once the scorecard is up and running you can really see the trends and patterns that emerge allowing you to delve into what is doing well and what needs improvement. Goldmann explained that by monitoring the scorecard, everyone becomes responsible for their numbers in relation to a particular task and it its therefore possible to hold them accountable in the future.

Recommended reading: 6 Essential Metrics You Need to Track to Grow Your Training Business

Step 4: Issues

The issues component is made up of two aspects, the first being the ‘Issues List’. “You have one list, could be electronic or on paper, one place where you collect all your issues. The list is made up of anything you need to solve. This could be an obstacle, a problem or an opportunity.

The second aspect of the issues is the priority. Once everyone has contributed to the list of issues you can then order them in a sequence of importance. From here the idea is to go deep into the issue using the concept of IDS™ (Identify-Discuss-Solve) to find out what the root is by discussing with those present at the meeting. Typically, we spend too much time in the discuss stage without ever actually having defined the real issue. Through this process you can get right into solving the actual problem, so it doesn’t return to the list

Step 5: Process

This component deals with the processes that make up the overall business. The aim here is to streamline processes so that repetition is eradicated and only the processes that will provide sustenance to the result are focused on.

Documenting the core processes means that when new people join the organisation you can provide them with an all in one solution that details exactly what it is they do. By reducing the organisational functionality to meaningful processes, the complexity is also reduced making it easier for everyone to understand exactly what is going on throughout the business.

Step 6: Traction®

Celie states that the last component, traction, is often the weakest part of most businesses. Split into two distinct sections, traction aims to make sure goals are being met and groups are consistently engaging with each other on a weekly basis to discuss achievements and obstacles.

The first part of traction is the Rocks, which as previously mentioned, act as a 90-day priority for individual team members to focus on achieving within that time frame. Rocks are also used for the leadership team to clearly define the collective goals of the organisation, which then filter down into specific teams. 

The second part of traction is the weekly ‘Level 10 Meetings™’ that are held by each department that keeps a handle on scorecard measures, Rock progress and Issues. These meetings act as a consistent pulse throughout the organisation weekly, quarterly and annually so everyone is up to speed on what they need to be doing and gets an idea as to what everyone else in the company is doing.

In Summary

Each component of the EOS philosophy when combined, will contribute hugely to the overall success of your business. By harnessing the power of EOS, it becomes possible to strip away all the unnecessary aspects of day to day business and focus solely on what needs to be done in order to achieve both your short and long-term goals. 

Recruiting the right people who fully understand your company’s vision can go a long way towards creating a working environment where every individual knows their role and how they can contribute to attaining those goals.  


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