An organization is most successful at achieving its goals when its employees are aligned and working towards the same outcome. It’s easy (and not uncommon) for employees to be working on tasks without fully appreciating how they are contributing to the overall objective. Employees are more likely to actively engage in the vision of the company if they understand the BIG PICTURE – not just their piece of the pie.
Here are 3 ways to help ensure that your employees are working together toward a change effort that contributes to organizational goals:
1. Cultivate a Shared Vision
An effective change management plan includes a shared vision of success. These questions will help you to assess how well you and your company cultivate a shared vision with employees:
- Are the reasons for the change being effectively communicated to employees?
- Do employees understand how their day-to-day tasks contribute to the bigger goal?
- Are mid-level managers empowered to motivate or reward their teams for behaviors that support the goal?
2. Design Organizational Goals To Be Cascading
When organizations set goals that are “cascading”, all levels of the organization are able to contribute. A cascading goal is one that can be translated from one level of the organization to the next, to ensure there is alignment between organizational strategy and individual behaviors.
Ensure that team leaders understand how their team contributes to the company goals and vision, and that they help employees understand how their individual roles make a vital contribution to the team – and the company.
A cascading goal might be: “Improve cost management by increasing efficiencies.”
Each team or department has different ways of contributing to the larger goal. For example, the underwriting team could contribute by implementing a minimum submission checklist to decrease underwriting time, but a shipping team could contribute by automating delivery of loans to investors.
|Organizational goal||Improve cost management by increasing efficiencies|
|Shipping team goal||Increase efficiencies by automating delivery of loans to investors|
|Individual goal||Increase number of loans shipped per day by transitioning to paperless workflow and automated delivery|
3. Celebrate Wins
Don’t wait until the end of the change initiative to celebrate. Be clear about metrics and celebrate incremental success. What you focus on grows! If your company’s goal is to transition to a 100% paperless workflow by the end of Q2, set milestones to celebrate short term wins. This helps fuel the momentum of the change effort. For example, when the first paperless loan funds and ships, send out a celebratory email. When the first branch or team is working at 50% paperless, stop to recognize the half-way mark.
By communicating often, ensuring employees understand how they contribute, and celebrating wins, organizations are much more likely to achieve their goals.