secret sauceWhen you’re field testing something new, and it seems to be working effectively, the next thing you need to do is hand it over to someone else to let them do it without your involvement and see if it still works. I’ve done this on a number of occasions only to find that when I handed it off to someone else, it didn’t work. When I’ve examined what happened, I’ve come to realize that I was bringing something into the equation that I hadn’t written down or incorporated into what I handed off to the other person. I had been intuitively filling in pieces that hadn’t actually been part of the official process.

That’s what I’ve come to refer to as the secret sauce. Often an innovative or intuitive leader can make something work by instinctively providing the secret sauce that makes it work. But if you’re that innovative leader, you don’t know if you’re adding the secret sauce until you hand your project off to someone else and let them try it out. If it doesn’t work for someone else, you need to go back and figure out what was changed in the delivery process. That’s the secret sauce that you forgot to share.