With every report, email, project and review, leadership is asking one question: “Is this person’s work helping the organization reach its goals?” It is an all too common source of frustration when the answer is “no”. We could play the blame game all day, but if your team doesn’t know and share your vision, it’s no one’s fault but your own. This everyday disconnect in the workplace is what transparency is aimed at fixing.
So let’s get on it! Creating a map to organizational transparency is made of four basic steps:
- Defining your vision
- Breaking that vision down into realistic and relevant goals
- Tracking those goals in real-time
- Acting on the information gathered
Define Your Vision
Maybe your vision is to create a company that can survive without you, or maybe your vision is to go completely virtual with your entire organization. Whatever your vision is, have you defined it, shared it, put it down on paper, or discussed it with anyone but your mom?
How is anyone else supposed to share your vision, if they don’t know what it is and what it means? Business strategist and author, Daniel Rasmus talks about how to define your vision in a recent FastCompany article:
“Many organizations confuse mission and vision. A mission is about who you are, missions rarely change. Visions should be dynamic and drive constant learning and innovation.”
Now It’s Time for a Break Down
You’re going to need some help here. This is where you figure out what the vision means for every part of your organization. This includes defining the big picture goals that will get you there, all the way down to the individual level. This can be overwhelming at first, but as each department starts to outline their own objectives, it becomes clearer how they will all work together to achieve the common goals. Workplace communications expert, Kerri Harris said:
“Tie the day’s events back to the vision, underscoring its relevance. From internal memos, presentation, or posters, the vision serves a reminder to the team of their purpose and goals. The vision can be incorporated into objective setting and performance review standards as well as interdepartmental projects…”
Each employee’s performance will need to be placed into a strategic context. This makes it simple for execs and managers to allocate their key talent exactly where the specific skill set is needed the most. This is how everything from hiring, to training and compensation practices become strategic drivers toward defined goals.
So you’ve defined your vision and communicated the goals that will get you there. Now to track those goals! Well that’s easier said than done. If you can think of several people that can drop what they’re doing and start tracking and reporting on daily goals, performance ratings, successes and failures in real-time, then more power to you, but that is usually not going to be the case.
If you haven’t gotten it by now, we made our name ClearCompany, because our software creates a transparent look into every professional aspect of an organization. I realize how cheesy this is, but think of our goal tracking software as one of those ant farms. You can see everything: every successful tunnel, every cave-in and every member of the team at work. That’s how our goal tracking software works, you get a full-picture look at the inner workings of your entire workforce as it’s happening.
Use Your Intel Intelligently
So this bird’s eye view is going to supply leaders with more information than they would probably expect, and every bit of it should be seen as an opportunity. You can now fix issues as they occur, dole out rewards and praise for hard work as it’s happening and offer comprehensive and strategic performance reviews.
The timely manner in which you receive this information is crucial to employee engagement and continued goal alignment. Furthermore, leaders can use this information to lead, and step away from their stifling micro-management behaviors.
We’ll admit it, breaking this process down into just four steps is a tad bit macro. There is a lot that goes in to implementing a big change like transparency into any organization. We’d love to talk with you about how your company can become clear. Call us, tweet us, take a demo! We’re here to help.
Photo Credit: Sergei Gnatuk via bigstock
Andre is the CEO and co-founder of ClearCompany. Prior to ClearCompany, Andre was Global Managing Director at Thomson Reuters, where he ran a 1Bn global business across 90 countries. Prior to Thomson Reuters, Andre was responsible for product development and operations at CCBN, a company he helped grow from a small start-up to number 36 on the INC 500.