As a field service leader, one of the biggest challenges you may face is finding the right balance of tackling today’s issues effectively while keeping your eye on how to evolve and innovate your business to take advantage of tomorrow’s opportunities. This balancing act looks different depending on the size of your company and your exact role, but I think it’s a common challenge that any of you could sit down with a beer and commiserate about.
I’ve talked with leaders of larger field service organizations for which this challenge presents itself in the complexities of managing two different teams – one focused on solving today’s problems, and one focused on innovation and what’s next. These larger organizations have the advantage of having more resources, but face greater hurdles in keeping them focused and productive toward a common goal. Making sure these teams are aligned but not overlapped, and both operating optimally can be taxing. These leaders are tasked with being able to effortlessly switch back and forth between one or the other, all while managing other day-to-day duties.
The leaders of smaller organizations don’t have those same resources, so they bear all of that weight alone. For these folks, it seems like what commonly happens is that they get so caught up in the problems of today that the forward-thinking gets pushed aside over and over again. When you’re drowning in daily struggles, it seems impossible to find time to sit down and think about the future.
So what’s the path through this common struggle? It looks different for each group, but the commonality is that as the field service leader, you have to be able to wear both hats.
For leaders in the larger organizations, you want to think about things like:
For leaders of smaller service organizations, these questions look more like:
Wherever you sit with this conundrum, know that you are not alone. I’ve had so many conversations with field service executives in all different industries and size of companies that are frustrated by this same thing, who feel like there’s just never enough of them to go around or get to everything they need to. Like any other balancing act, there’s never going to be a perfect equilibrium. As long as you’re keeping in mind the need to apply effort on both sides, you will sort out the right mix.