FROM EXEC Alignment
Today’s executive leadership teams are challenged to achieve high performance and sustainable results amidst the diversity, complexity and incessant changes in the market as well as their own organizations. To successfully meet the challenges they must first foster alignment to ensure all dimensions of their organization are working in a concerted synergistic manner.
It’s often been said that when it comes to business strategy the hardest part isn’t the analysis and planning. It’s the execution. The reasons are many. Often, individuals are unclear, confused or simply unaware about what the strategy is, or what the key strategic goals are. Even when the strategy has been well communicated and is widely understood, commitment to it may vary greatly from one person to another or be lacking altogether. Sometimes, the best strategic intentions simply evaporate in the heat of battle.
Alignment is a dynamic process of dialogue and discovery in which leaders, managers and individual contributors unite behind a set of shared values, vision and purpose to collectively understand strategic drivers, objectives and initiatives necessary to fulfill the vision. The process is simple though not necessarily easy. It requires a keen understanding of constructive communication methodologies such as Emotional Intelligence in addition to being able to apply systemic thinking where participants are able to integrate multiple perspectives and ideas. Alignment is not a “buy-in” or “go along with” process, rather a conscious commitment to accept full responsibility and accountability to create leveraged business strategies and drive their successful execution.
Our Accelerated Alignment Process begins with one-on-one interviews. We’ll ask team members to identify strategic goals and the factors-both external and internal to the organization that thwart or support the achievement of those goals. From our interviews we determine:
Which goals are widely held among group members and which are not
Overall collective commitment to strategic goals
Key “unlocking” strategies necessary for effective execution and implementation
How well executive team members work together
From here we facilitate the first executive alignment meeting that is designed to:
Identify areas of high, low and variable commitment to strategic goals
Rally the team around areas of strong commitment
Explore the underlying causes of variable commitment to strategic goals
Assess the team’s willingness to work to increase alignment
The Accelerated Alignment Process is not just for executive groups and strategy implementation. It can be used with all levels of an organization and for any situation that requires a group to take a complex set of actions. Moreover, it is very useful in bringing different organizations together in mergers or acquisitions, and has even been used to forge stronger alliances between executives in provider organizations and their counterparts in client or customer organizations.