Business needs to be productive or it won’t last. We all know this, but many of us try to hard to “manage” and force people into more productivity. There is a difference between forced outcomes and leading an organisation to achieving goals.
A winning corporate culture is something everyone wants – from the CEO to the mail sorter. Everyone wants to be in an encouraging environment where their strengths are applied and the vision is clear and desirable. Most importantly, customers want to engage with companies with clearly superior cultures. For this to happen, a company’s “mission” needs to be clearly communicated and understood by the entire organisation.
There are three steps every leader should take immediately to create a strategically focused organization:
- Develop a set of 1-3 Non-Negotiable Principles around your Vision and your Competitive Advantage, i.e. your key strengths.
- Communicate, train, coach, repeat – until it becomes a common language and behaviour.
- Build purposeful employee networks to open the channels of communication internally and externally.
Sounds large, but these steps can be implemented immediately to improve employee engagement and steer your company towards it’s goals. There is too often a disconnect between what the leaders of a company want and what the employees are thinking and doing. This is not a lack of employee productivity, but a lack of clear communication of purpose coming from the leaders. EVERY employee must understand the purpose of his or her role in the overall mission, and every leader should understand that it is part of EVERYONE’S job to contribute to the mission/
For example, the role of an accounting rep is not only to control spending, but to proactive help clear the best path for the organisation to invest in competitive knowledge and innovation initiatives to grow value. The role of IT is to make it easier for people to do their work and for customer to engage with the organisation – not create obstacles in access to knowledge and cut costs through debilitating automation that undermines the brand experience. The main task of a Leader is to provide a vision that paints a bold and relevant future for everyone.
The article, Non-negotiable Principles: How to Win the Productivity Game, explains a bit more of the dire need for improved corporate culture in productivity, as well as how leaders can take these three steps now to begin to improve their bottom line.