How to run a lockdown

lockdown /ˈläkdoun/ n. Infrequent, timeboxed sprint during which an organization deprioritizes everything else to pivot focus toward a goal

Imagine yourself in these scenarios:

Stories like these are not common, but they exist. Moments of crisis are inevitable. When they hit, it’s imperative that people focus exclusively on the one thing that matters most. How do you make that happen?

The answer: declare a lockdown.

Hit a gong. Send an email. Schedule an all-hands meeting.

Where you declare a lockdown is less important than how you declare it. Specifically, observe the following rules:

After a lockdown begins, it’s important to emphasize:

When the exit criteria is met, celebrate! Recognize outstanding achievements. Make it special.

Then, it’s time to get back to work.

February 2022