4DX Strategy: The Benefits of Executing Your Goals

This article is an excerpt from the Shortform book guide to "The 4 Disciplines of Execution" by Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, and Jim Huling. Shortform has the world's best summaries and analyses of books you should be reading.

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What are the benefits of pursuing a 4DX strategy? How can it fundamentally change your culture and employee satisfaction?

The 4DX strategy offers a number of ancillary benefits beyond the obvious one of accomplishing your goal. You’ll see greater engagement and key shifts in behavior.

Read on for more about the benefits of implementing the 4DX strategy.

Ancillary Benefits of the 4DX Strategy

In addition to helping you execute a wildly important goal, a 4DX strategy also increases engagement and creates permanent behavioral change in your team.


All four of the disciplines increase engagement and morale, not only Discipline 3:

Discipline 1 improves morale because once there’s a WIG, even though people still have to deal with the whirlwind—the daily responsibilities necessary for running an organization—and the WIG’s challenges, they have clarity and a finish line.

Discipline 2 improves engagement because looking only at lag measures can be a frustrating end goal with no roadmap. Even if employees understand the WIG and think it’s important, if they don’t understand their own contribution, two things keep them from engaging: they don’t know what to do or they don’t think they’re capable. However, lead measures are concrete, doable, and measurable.

Discipline 4 helps overcome Patrick Lencioni’s three major reasons for disengagement:

  • Namelessness. When people feel like they’re not individually important, they disengage. In a WIG session, every single person speaks. No one is anonymous.
  • Lack of relevance. When people feel that their work doesn’t contribute to anything, they disengage. In a WIG session, every person assesses how keeping their commitments moves the lead and lag measures—everyone’s individual contribution is obvious
  • Lack of quantification. When people can’t measure their helpfulness, they disengage. In a WIG session, one of the agenda items is a review of the scoreboard.

(Shortform note: To learn more about how to keep your team engaged, read our summaries of Patrick Lencioni’s The Five Dysfunctions of a Team and The Ideal Team Player.)

4DX Strategy: The Benefits of Executing Your Goals

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Like what you just read? Read the rest of the world's best book summary and analysis of Chris McChesney, Sean Covey, and Jim Huling's "The 4 Disciplines of Execution" at Shortform.

Here's what you'll find in our full The 4 Disciplines of Execution summary:

  • The 4 disciplines that can make any strategy a successful reality
  • Why a great plan falls apart when you don't think adequately about execution
  • The 6 steps you need to scale the 4DX model across an entire organization

Rina Shah

An avid reader for as long as she can remember, Rina’s love for books began with The Boxcar Children. Her penchant for always having a book nearby has never faded, though her reading tastes have since evolved. Rina reads around 100 books every year, with a fairly even split between fiction and non-fiction. Her favorite genres are memoirs, public health, and locked room mysteries. As an attorney, Rina can’t help analyzing and deconstructing arguments in any book she reads.

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