Michael Bungay Stanier on Do More Great Work, Part 11

In the book, Do More Great Work.: Stop the Busywork, and Start the Work that Matters, Michael Bungay Stanier shares his inspiration and techniques to help us do more work that matters.

These are some of my favorite takeaways from reading the book.

In Part 6 of the book, Michael discusses how to implement plans and ensure we do what we want to do.

He recommends we take the following steps:

Map 12 What will you do?

  1. Start by answering the question, “What’s the easiest thing to do?” Then, pick the most straightforward idea we have had and write them down.
  2. Next, answer, “What would have the most impact?” Then, write down what would make the most difference as part of our Great Work Project.
  3. Now focus on, “What do you want to do?” This is the idea we are most drawn to and most excited by.
  4. Finally, we ask ourselves, “What will you do?” This is the action we are ready to commit to doing.

Map 13 What Support Do You Need?

  1. Sometimes we need extra help and support to take on our Great Work project. Michael suggests that there are three places to look for help.
  2. People who love us: They will offer cheers, hugs, and unconditional support. Do not underestimate how important and sustaining these things are.
  3. People with skills: These are people who can provide things, do things, fix things, combine things, give advice, and in general, make things happen.
  4. People with influence: They can open doors, grease rails, make introductions, and help us connect with people whose help we need.

Map 14 What’s the Next Step?

  • Michael offers two secrets to doing what we want to do. For one thing, we decide on, then taking the next step is a powerful way to get moving. In addition, we keep our Great Work project moving forward by building on accountability.
  • First, we write down what we will do. Then, make it clear and specific.
  • Second, we write down when we will complete it. Again, be specific by setting a date.
  • Next, we define the very first step that needs to be taken.
  • Finally, we decide whether we need support to be accountable to ourselves. We must always ask ourselves these five accountability questions:
    1. What will we do?
    1. By when?
    1. What does success or completion look like?
    1. How will we let our accountability buddy know we have finished?
    1. What are the consequences of not doing this?