We typically avoid any talk about politics, so we will keep to that standard and let the current happenings at the Wisconsin/Illinois border work itself out between the 2.5 parties and focus on the difference between governance and government.
We practice governance every day, from reporting on our combined activities with our customers to communicating effectively. It isn’t about oversight or keeping law and order, but more about a consistent way to monitor if we are collectively meeting our goals.
Imagine if the federal government and our elected officials actually published the budget, communicated what they want to cut and why that made sense. Well, believe it or not, they do publish it, but it is so confusing that you need an economics degree to get into the detail. So you hear what they want you to hear about “cutting taxes”, which now seems to mean either actually lowering tax rates or decreasing spending, and that makes no sense because I thought that was cutting expenses. But I digress.
You don’t run your business that way! Most of us have a budget; it is not only balanced but its objective is to make money, not print money or issue bonds. When revenues (a.k.a. taxes on our clients) go up, times are good and maybe you hire another sales person. When times are not so good you look at cutting costs and you make sure to have money in the bank for a rainy day.
That’s where our governance model comes into play. Right up front, we align our interest in your budget and measurable objectives for next year, and even sign up for a few. This isn’t about cutting imaginary costs, or simply not increasing a budget and calling it a reduction like our friends in D.C. No, this is the real deal. You changed your business model and hired Cognet to meet real objectives, like reducing your cost per unit by 40 percent, or eliminating $1 million in specific expenses. We become part of your company and are just as much on the hook for delivery as your own people. Even better, you have a contract with us to hold us accountable.
The measurement can’t just be about how many benefit recons we did right last month, it has to go past that to how much money you saved quarter over quarter and how you applied it to hiring service professionals to get client retention up two percent.
Come on man, there are no “non-budgetary items” in our relationships. Neither of us would put a couple of wars on the American Express and keep it out of the budget, we would put that line in there and get ourselves a plan to manage through it as a team.
Governance is about saying the thing costs $89 billion a month and finding a way to pay for it over the next thirty years, not talking about issues that only matter to a few people.
When you are ready to add accountability, authority and responsibility to your business with some governance on the side, give us a call.