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Having a list of things to stop doing can help free up time and resources and allow staff to complete the valuable things on their to-do lists. Some practical steps for building a list you’ll be able to follow through on.
A stop-doing list is the reverse of that to-do list on many of our desks. We all know our organizations should have one, but few do. Failing to cut some products, programs, and services (PPS) may ultimately doom some associations because they won’t be able to invest in anything new. Think about your PPS like a flower: We sometimes must prune to see beautiful blossoms next year.
If you’re interested in creating a stop-doing list and then implementing it, how do you proceed? First, make it a “good news” story. Make sure everyone involved knows the reason behind the initiative is to build on your organization’s strengths. Second, have at least one volunteer champion. Stopping anything in an organization is a risky prospect, so make sure you have a great champion.
Creating a stop-doing list requires a deliberate and transparent process. A one-size-fits-all approach will not work because associations are unique in their PPS, culture, and politics. Implementing the stop-doing list requires associations to commit to following through to the very end. If you go halfway and write a list but then do nothing, your reputation, culture, and organization will suffer.