How to Use Regular Tolls to Achieve Goals

This is the fourth in a series of four posts about the RGT coaching method. In the last few weeks, we discussed the basic principles, followed by more detailed posts about Roles and Goals. If you haven’t yet, you might want to read those before proceeding.

The T in RGT stands for Tolls. Driving the famous toll road, the New Jersey Turnpike, you arrive at checkpoints every so often and have to shovel in money. Then you drive for a while before you hit another checkpoint, throw more money in the basket, and drive on.  So it goes until you arrive at your destination.

That’s what we mean by Tolls: A meaningful exchange of value at a prescribed rate and frequency that is agreed to by both the Coach and the Doer or Doer team. Before the project begins, you need to set specific dates, times, and methods for reporting progress.

The biggest concern I hear from managers is, “How can I be sure if I delegate this project that they’re not going to put this thing in the ditch?” Of course, there’s always a danger of that happening. But we can significantly reduce that risk by scheduling your Toll checkpoints.

RGT allows even the most micromanagy micromanager to delegate because the project can be intercepted if it appears to be off budget, off target, or running late. Tolls help anticipate problems early enough to get the project back on track, reassign a team, or scramble to find another way of getting the project done.

Toll meetings ensure that the project is done properly, and they give the manager confidence in letting go.

Keys to Success with RGT

  1. Explicit expectations are the difference between success and failure.
  2. Follow the process–it ensures more transparency in the relationship between the Coach and the Doer.
  3. The Coach cannot be the Doer. The Coach is the definer, goal setter, resource provider, consultant, and hopefully cheerleader. If the Coach becomes the Doer, we’ve defeated the purpose of RGT and created the very thing we’re trying to avoid: micromanagement.
  4. The Doer and the Doer team must come to the Coach with solutions, not problems.
  5. Practice makes perfect. The more your team uses it, the easier it is to delegate tasks and for the team to deliver quality work in a timely way.

There have been situations where things went wrong and I was tempted to blame someone else. But if I go through the RGT process in my mind, I usually see I didn’t do a good job of defining the roles or the goals, or I didn’t install a progress report system. If you keep RGT in the back of your mind, you’ll find you’re a better manager, coach, and leader.

If you’re interested in learning more about the RGT method, send me an email at Scott@doubledareyou.us and we can set up a time to talk.

photo credit: veyoung52 New Jersey Turnpike Bridge via photopin (license)