Reverse pilots

Have you ever wondered if a project or initiative that takes away a large chunk of your time is really valuable?

A pilot is an effective way to test if adding something will create value. A reverse pilot does the opposite. It test whether the subtraction of something will be noticed.

To carry out a reverse pilot, stop a potentially non-useful project or initiative and see if it has any negative consequences. For instance, stop shipping that weekly newsletter or stop attending that practice call with a hundred other people there. If somebody misses the newsletter or your presence in that meeting, they will let you know it. But more often than not, our actions are less valuable than we think they are.

A reverse pilot takes some courage to execute. But it separates the essential from the non-essential. Thereby, it helps us serve people who would miss us if we’re gone rather than pandering to those who wouldn’t notice the difference.

Essentialism – Greg McKeown

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