Episode 84: 4 Ways to Be More Effective at Execution

The 90th Percentile: An Unconventional Leadership Podcast

Published: August 17, 2022


Many underestimate how important execution is to their careers, it is true that bosses place a premium on execution, which we define as the ability to achieve individual goals and objectives. There are many parts of your job that are important, but if you want to move ahead in your career, it might be time to double down on simply getting more stuff done – it’s what your boss wants to see. But does being effective at execution mean working longer hours? In this episode, we explore the research showing four things leaders do to excel in execution.

Key Learnings

  • When we asked senior managers to indicate the importance of execution, they ranked it first on a list of 16 skills.
  • Four behaviors helped with improving execution: be clear and methodical, set stretch goals and deadlines, give more feedback, and resolve conflict/build team unity.
  • Our research indicates that while giving a little more recognition did not affect execution, being above the 65thpercentile on this skill had a major impact.
  • In our research, we also found that there’s almost a one-to-one relationship between leaders who are seen as fast and those who are seen as great executors.


Connect with Joe Folkman


Zenger Folkman hosts an exclusive live webinar every month, where you can meet Jack Zenger and Joe Folkman and join in a conversation about their latest research in leadership development. Find out more information and register here.


How to Improve Your Ability to Effectively Execute– Article By Jack Zenger and Joe Folkman

The Secrets of Great Teamwork– Harvard Business Review Article by Martin Haas and Mark Mortensen