Here’s a statistic that should alarm you: Kaplan and Norton (founders of the Balanced Scorecard) say only 5% of employees understand their company’s strategy. When you consider the role that your employees play in your day-to-day business operations, that can spell disaster. Those same employees are the ones ultimately responsible for executing the tangible elements of your organizational strategy.
Some executives may assume their employees are all well-informed, invested, and enthusiastic about the organization’s strategic goals. Others don’t give it a second thought—because strategy isn’t everyone’s job, right?
Wrong. And this way of thinking will set even the organizations with the best strategies up for failure. To fully achieve your goals, you’ve got to figure out how to make strategy everyone’s job.
How Do I Make Strategy Everyone’s Job?
Here are four simple tips to get started:
1. Involve Your Staff in Planning
A hundred heads are better than one. Consider asking for, and using, ideas from employees during the initial development of your strategic plan. Ownership and participation early on will foster greater buy-in as strategic initiatives begin to roll out. You’ll gain even more momentum if you celebrate all participation and notable contributions.
2. Prioritize Visibility—Communicate Clearly and Often
A strategy map uploaded to your organization’s intranet isn’t going to radically affect your strategy’s success rates. Start finding more opportunities for visibility. Some potential options include:
- Showcase strategic goals on computer screensavers
- Post flyers showing the progress of key measures in areas where people typically meet or by your coffee and water stations; update these flyers weekly
- Send out an email with exciting graphics highlighting recently completed initiatives
It’s also important to understand your audience. Leaders know their organizations best. Use the best form of media to communicate your strategy. Focus your message in ways that will get attention and buy-in from your workforce.
3. Align Your Team
Be sure to define your team’s responsibilities when it comes to strategic initiatives. This will align your workforce towards cohesive organizational goals while also making them more aware of how they’re contributing to the big picture.
4. Incentivize Strategic Success
We’re all driven by rewards. If you link some formal compensation, or informal benefit, to targeted scorecard measures (or whatever strategy management framework you’re using), it will be much easier to get folks to buy-in.
One example might be an employee recognition program. Rather than recognizing simply “excellent work,” you could tie the standards for admirable work to specific strategic goals. This could be done in whatever format best fits your organization’s culture. You might even throw a party for major milestones. It’s all about aligning organizational culture with strategy.
Spider Impact Makes Strategy Everyone's Job
In an era of increasing digital transformation and distributed/remote workforces, strategic alignment has become more important than ever. Spider Impact makes it easy to get your team aligned to organizational strategy and goals. With Spider Impact you can:
1. Communicate your strategy to everyone in the organization so all employees understand how they contribute to big-picture goals
2. Assign ownership and accountability to each team member
3. View initiative dependencies across objectives, departments, and teams to ensure you meet your goals
4. Improve team interaction and communication to drive better results through collaboration