When your business is small, alignment is easy. Everyone is on the same page. Your staff isn’t that big, and they’re all on board because they share your vision. They are excited to be involved, and they’re having fun.
Alignment has occurred.
You all want to increase your success, and you work hard together to make that happen. You hire more people, and that’s when the alignment of vision starts to deteriorate. Managers and their teams can hunker down, watching out exclusively for their own agendas and losing sight of their place in the whole. This may challenge senior management’s earlier strong sense of purpose, setting the whole organization up for lack of direction.
What are you to do? Should you back up, backing away from Predictable Success? Some do, but is that really what you want? There is a way to re-align and clear the path for growth.
Les McKeown, in his book Predictable Success, advises 3 steps to save business realignment:
1. “Do it at the right time.”
Don’t attempt to realign your team until you’ve taken the long look at your organizational chart I recommended here in an earlier post. Only when everyone understands how their own role fits into the common good can realignment succeed.
2. “Revisit the organization’s mission, vision, and values.”
You were clear on this in the beginning. Maybe you still are, but then again maybe your corporate identity has clouded a bit. Make sure your guiding statements are still as relevant as they were, and if they’re not, correct them to reflect reality. Plan a management retreat centered on this outcome.
3. “Break up the clique- and silo-based alignment.”
Groups that insist on maintaining their own priorities, separate from the whole, will slow your progress into Predictable Success. Perhaps they’ve lost confidence in you or another leader to have clear direction, and a strong alternate leader has substituted his or her own vision for yours.
McKeown says his experience has shown him that 70-80 percent of the time, once you revitalize your guiding statements, those rogue groups will fall in line. Those who don’t are communicating pretty clearly that they don’t want to move into Predictable Success with you. It’s an unpleasant reality to deal with, but if you don’t, you’ll stay stuck.
Once you’ve strengthened your team’s alignment around common goals, McKeown assures us that, “variety and diversity can (and will) flourish once again.” Here’s to flourishing!
Related articles on Predictable Success can be found here.
Is your business in Alignment or does it need a re-alignment?