As we work with executive teams around the world, it is amazing to see those who get it and those who don’t. What is … it? It … is the direct connection between organizational clarity and business performance. So, we are going to go out on a limb here and say, without question, the number one priority for every CEO is to establish and maintain … clarity.
Clarity in purpose.
Clarity in strategy.
Clarity in culture.
Clarity in story.
Employees need it. Customers demand it.
Yet, we see many executive teams paying little attention to these dimensions of organizational performance. In fact, more often than not, this is the degree of C-suite involvement we see in each of these areas…
Purpose — Most executive teams invest the time to conduct a “find our purpose” workshop and define a purpose statement. Then they hand the keys to the head of internal communications to handle the rest. Many believe their job is done.
Strategy — This is an area where executives spend a significant amount of time, yet they spend very little effort formulating a plan to ensure the strategy is infused into the minds of employees across the organization.
Culture — The “C” word raises its head in the C-suite when things get ugly, like when employee retention or recruitment numbers aren’t looking so good. Otherwise, defining, managing and maintaining culture gets relegated to HR.
Story — This is the message that defines the position the company wants to own, what it does, what makes it different and the value it delivers. This becomes a priority for many executive teams when competitors are threatening their market position. Otherwise, this story changes with the wind and is delivered inconsistently by sales and marketing professionals across the organization.
We are not trying to disparage or be disrespectful to C-suite executives … after all they are our clients … they are our reason for being. We are just being honest. The truth is, very few C-suite teams pay enough attention to purpose, strategy, culture and story. You could say, this isn’t their job — they have lieutenants who are responsible for these things. We would beg to differ.
At the high-performing companies we have worked with, C-suite executives made an intentional decision to apply sustained effort across all four of these dimensions. Not only shaping and defining what they are, but also working to ensure they are infused into the minds of employees and customers. Why? Because that is what it takes to establish and maintain clarity.
The most common excuse we hear from executives, as it relates to the time they spend in these areas, is they are soft and hard to measure. But the simple fact is, clarity translates into improved business performance. It just does.
In fact, the Institute for Public Relations (IPR) conducted an extensive, global research project to answer the question ‘Does organizational clarity drive organizational success?’ The study discovered there was, in fact, a direct correlation between the degree of clarity across the employee population and the company’s overall performance.
OnMessage helps C-suite executives dramatically improve clarity and alignment across all four dimensions of organizational performance (purpose, strategy, culture and story). We can help you increase clarity across your organization to deliver a superior customer experience, increase employee engagement and improve financial performance.
Does your organization have the clarity it needs to drive optimal business performance? We can tell you. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to request more information on our Organizational Clarity Assessment and Report.