Software for working ON your business.

Business Systems

Not every team fits nicely into a box, so encouragework provides a flexible platform for our clients to mix and match the best features from many of the popular business systems, plus a few of our own innovations.

encouragework subscribers make use of popular systems such as Traction/EOS from EOS Worldwide as well as Scaling Up from Gazelles/Verne Harnish. We are fans of *all* of these systems and are grateful for their contributions to the contemporary business management thinking.

References to the terms "Traction", "EOS", "Entrepreneurial Operating System" are the property of EOS Worldwide

References to the terms Scaling Up are the property of Gazelles and Verne Harnish.

References to Quadrant 2 are credited to Stephen Covey's "The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People".

References to Theory of Constraints are credited to Eli Goldratt.

Traction EOS V/TO

A core tenet of the Traction/EOS experience is the creating of the team's Vision/Traction Organizer (V/TO).

encouragework provides a template under the "My Team" > "Documents" tab. To create a new V/TO for your team, search the list for "V/TO" and then select the "+" button.

A new, empty V/TO is awaiting you to populate for your Team.


If you're new to the Traction process, you may want to engage with a Traction Implementer to get some assistance with populating your V/TO. Or contact the encouragework team and we can connect you with an EOS Implementer.

Once created, you can print out your V/TO or include it in an encouragework dashboard.

Now that you have a completed V/TO, you will want to identify some of your key metrics, commonly referred to as Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). Your KPIs will help you track your progress towards your one year and three year goals.

You will want to put these KPIs on a dashboard for your team(s) to view each day.

During your quarterly meetings and your annual planning sessions, pull up the V/TO for your team and review your plans. Make adjustments as necessary, update your KPIs, and update your dashboards. 

Traction EOS IDS

The weekly Level 10 meeting is an essential part of the Traction/EOS experience.

The "Meetings" experience in encouragework is a great place to spend time with your team to conduct your EOS Level 10 meeting. 

After you have executed your regular sequence of activities including check-in, cutomer & employee updates, Scoreboard review, Rock review, and ToDo review, it is time to "IDS."

IDS stands for the following:




As discussed in the post on Covey's Quadrant 2 items, Issues are topics which are Important and trend towards the Not Urgent.

When recording an Issue in encouragework, you can optionally enable the "Value Calculator."

The Value Calculator is a simple means of ranking the open issues to help your team prioritize.

Value = Benefit / Cost

If you have an Issue that has the potential for a high benefit and can be resolved with a very low cost effort, there is a (relatively) high value to resolving this issue.

Conversely, if solving an issue results in little benefit and the cost is high, there is relatively little value to resolving this issue.


As you work through each Issue, determine if the Issue is really a concern. If not, simply close it and move on to the next most important Issue.

As needed, create one ore more ToDos and assign them to relevant Team Members with an appropriate due date. When at all possible, attempt to keep your ToDo's short, concise, and due at the next meeting.

If you find that you have too many ToDos assigned to a single team member, you have two recommended practices:

  1. Move the ToDo assignment to another capable team member.  Always keep the GWC tool in mind. Does the Team Member: Get it, Want it, Capacity to do it--in mind.
  2. Adjust the due date on the ToDo.

As you work through your ToDos, it is common to need to re-prioritize based on an individual's calendar availability. Live in reality here. It is better to get a couple of items done and the Issues resolved than to burden team members with too many ToDos and nothing meaningful gets accomplished. Time is precious. Don't waste it.

Traction EOS Meeting Management

The weekly Level 10 meeting is a core component of the Traction process. encouragework helps you manage your meetings by bringing everything together in one place:

  1. Your meeting will likely always be in the same place, but in the event that it moves around, you can update the meeting location and time.
  2. You can record meeting notes.
  3. You can view (and edit) the Scorecard for your team.
  4. You can view the ToDos which are due for the current meeting as well as see the ToDos which are slated for completion prior to the next meeting.
  5. You can easily add ToDos, edit ToDos, reassign ToDos, etc.
  6. You can review your V/TO and quarterly Rocks by bringing up the appropriate documents.
  7. When all of the regular activities are complete, you can jump into the prioritized list of Issues for this team.
  8. It is a common practice to create a dashboard for your team that consolidates your V/TO, your Rocks, your Key Metrics, and even outside systems into one place. encouragework is very flexible and you are encouraged to use the combination of tools and information to help your team review the information necessary to propel you forward.

The key elements to a successful weekly meeting:

  • Check in on your progress (Scoreboard).
  • Check in on your strategic objectives (Initiatives/Rocks).
  • Check in on your accountability (ToDos).
  • Review the Important but Not Urgent items (Issues).
  • Leave your meeting with clarity on what needs to be accomplished in the upcoming cycle.

Traction EOS “Rocks”

You can think of Rocks as those things that need to get done which are very important but are typically much more involved than a weekly ToDo. 

Examples of Rocks include things like:

  • Rewrite Employee Handbook
  • Revise utilization calculation criteria
  • Research and retain new consulting firm to help with project X
  • Execute website refresh
  • Hire new salesperson

There are three means of managing Rocks in

  1. Use the "Initiatives" section under My Team. Each Initiative is a "Rock". Describe the Initiative's purpose. Assign an owner. Optionally, create ToDos related to this Initiative. ToDos which are associated with an Initiative have a small blue "badge" that will give you a visual indicator that the ToDo is connected to a larger, strategic purpose.
  2. Determine when your Rocks are due and create ToDos with due dates which are aligned with the "term" of the Rock. For example, most teams assign Rocks on a quarterly basis. This might look like each individual creating ToDos for the meeting which coincides with the last meeting of the quarter. The ToDos for this particular meeting may then be incorporated into a Dashboard. The benefit of the "ToDo" approach for Rocks is that the responsible Team Member will see those ToDos on their personal ToDo list.
  3. Create a "Document" under the Documents tab which lists the Rocks for the quarter. This document may then be incorporated into a Dashboard.

The best practice is option #1, however, every team works differently and encouragework provides you with the flexibility you need to run your teams the way you see fit.

Here is a new Initiative with a pair of ToDos assigned to different Team Members:

Each individual user sees their "Initiative ToDos" in their own ToDo view. Note that blue badge with the number 1 -- this is an indicator that this ToDo is tied to an Initiative.

If you hover over the badge, you can see the underlying Initiative description:

Traction EOS Scoreboards

Imagine a game without a scoreboard. It is pretty difficult to watch, let alone play that kind of game.

encouragework recognizes that scoreboards are crucial to keeping everyone's head in the game.

To that end, there are a number of ways to keep score with encouragework!

  1. Everything starts with managing Key Performance Indicators (KPIs).
    1. Define your KPIs.
    2. Share them with the appropriate Teams (remember, encouragework allows you to map to the numerous and often disparate Teams you are part of).
    3. Automate the population of KPIs via encouragework's Application Programming Interface (API).
  2. For each Team, you can define a "Scorecard" displayed on the weekly meeting page.
  3. You can also create one or more Dashboards, which can include as many KPIs as you like.
  4. Under the My Account area, you can create Email Summaries. Use Email Summaries to send yourself (and/or other stakeholders) summary emails containing the latest values of relevant KPIs. You can create as many Email Summary setups as you desire, each with its own:
    1. Schedule of delivery 
    2. Recipient list
    3. List of KPIs
  5. Use the encouragework API to "read" KPI values to make your own, custom experiences.
  6. Bring data from multiple, distinct systems into a single aggregated source.
    1. Define "overlay" KPIs so you can view relationships between various quantities
    2. Define "thresholds" so you can get a sense of what "good" and "bad" values look like for each of your KPIs.

Traction Implementer Best Practices

If you are a Traction Implementer, there are two primary models you can use to engage with encourgework:

  1. For each of your client teams, create a Team within your own encouragework account.
    • For example, if you are working with the "Acme Corporation", you will create a Team entitled "EOS-Acme".
    • By creating the Team, you become an "Admin" for this team.
    • Next, invite the respective Team Members:
      • Etc.
    • Work with your client to establish appropriate Key Performance Indicators and train them on how to record those values on a weekly or monthly basis.
    • Use the Issues, Documents, and Dashboard features to run your client's Level 10 Meetings, document their V/TO, and to review KPIs.
  2. Have your client sign up for their own encouragework account and then invite you as a member (or possibly an Admin) of the appropriate Team(s). Train your clients to be self-sufficient by creating their own encouragework Teams as they push Traction throughout their own organizations.

If you would like to learn more about how encouragework can help you bring success to your Traction/EOS clients, please feel free to contact us.

Scaling Up with encouragework

Most business systems include:




Meeting Pulse / Regular Checkins

encouragework has all of these elements in its core functionality.

ScalingUp tools are brought to bear in the Document Templates pre-loaded under MyTeam -> Documents.

Each of the Scaling Up document templates are described under the Education section.

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