A rowing crew that is off rhythm will go in every which direction and never reach its destination. In order to be an efficient team, all members must row in perfect sync with one another, moving the boat in the same direction.
The same rule applies to your organization. Oftentimes business leaders set goals that are never achieved because the company’s team members are not lined up to work towards the same goals.
Alignment is the key to a company’s success. Without it, businesses are held back from growing and reaching their full potentials. In order to seamlessly instill alignment into your organization, make sure that your company operates according to the following three characteristics.
1. Visibility. A company must have clear core values, core purpose and goals in order to be successful in the long run. A strategic plan outlining these areas of the business should be displayed in a central location that is accessible to everyone in the organization.
Likewise, individual progress towards goals should be visible to everyone in the organization. This distinctly reveals what is and what is not on track, making it easy for business leaders to pinpoint areas that need more attention. Plus, having this information public also encourages accountability among team members.
2. Accountability. Responsibility drives businesses. Build a work environment of accountability and follow through. In order to create a system of accountability, first you must give team members ownership of the organization’s goals. This gives team members pride in knowing they are making an impact on the success of the business. Implement a system of reporting to measure performance and results. When team members are excelling, recognize them to increase motivation. If some are off course, provide them with feedback to help them get back on track.
If done correctly, accountability will allow leaders to determine whether the organization is on the right course, whether they have the right people in the right places and whether they are achieving goals.
3. Transparency. Effective communication within an organization is crucial to achieve alignment. Encourage a culture of openness and collaboration in order to build trust. When organizations transparently and honestly share information, it keeps employees connected to the big picture.
A combination of these three attributes will help you achieve alignment in your organization. With online platforms like Petra Coach’s AlignToday.com, organizations can track their progress toward goals and ensure that their entire weight is moving in the same direction. Earlier this week, Align was named the preferred software of Gazelle’s coaching services at the FORTUNE Growth Summit 2014 in Las Vegas.
This story was originally published in The Tennessean.