Does Perfect planning = perfect results? Unfortunately, no! Not in any walk of life or business can one create a perfect plan all the time. The reason is simple: there are too many variables outside the control of the planner. As the rock star of the Iraq war, Don Rumsfeld, said "There are known knowns. These are things we know that we know. There are known unknowns. That is to say, there are things that we know we don't know. But there are also unknown unknowns. There are things we don't know we don't know." OK, if your head has stopped spinning from the quote, let us focus on the issue at hand. If there are no perfect plans, then how does one succeed in business? Flexibility and the ability to improvise. Rheingold, of Dogster.com has summed this up nicely. "Instead of working on a feature for months trying to get it perfect," Rheingold says, "we'll work on something for two weeks and then spend two or three days listening to users and fine-tuning it." This approach is especially valuable if you have reliable data about your operations. In eBusiness, there is a mountain of data about operations stored in your weblogs and collected by other means. This data tells you how your perfectly planned move or perfectly designed festure is doing in real life i.e. when your customers get a crack at it. Analyzing this data one can learn a lot and make mid course correction - actually, many corrections. Because business is never static. It is critical to have a "feedback loop" that connects your delivery strream processes to the innovation processes. When a product and/or service is delivered, this feedback loop kicks in and monitors the results. Based upon the data, you make midcourse corrections. Read how other companies have learnt from their mistakes>>
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