Enterprise Dynamics

enterprise I define Enterprise Dynamics as the circulatory system within a company, a family or organization. It directly relates to a company’s vision, mission, and values that are embedded in a business culture. These dynamics relate to organizational development, process flow, policies and procedures, hiring strategies, morale assessment, and any philosophy connected to the company including social media, “street cred”, and public and employee perceptions of what the company does.

This section will address matters that touch the dynamics so you can have a coach’s eye view of how a healthy and thriving environment looks like.

Your comments are encouraged and am happy to return calls as they related to your issues.-MC

How do you control the weather in your
department or business?

Are your team members wondering what mood you’ll be in today? Do they scan your face when you enter the room to get a reading on you? If so, you’re having an impact on your “weather”.

Words matter and so does delivery of those words. You set the tone whether your leading a team or your family.

Here’s a self check using a simple coaching technique called “clearing.”

Before entering your work place, release any mental chatter that is floating in your head before going into your office. The car is a terrific dumping ground. If you have recording capabilities (most smartphones have a recording app) you can unload there with your concerns and then play it back in a neutral time so you can hear how you sound to others.
Another tactic is to be aware of what you respect in others.
What behavior are you rewarding with your attention?

Let me know what you find. See if phrasing comments in a positive mode rather than “can’t”, you will be amazed at the response, especially if you’re watching the non-verbal cues.

Source: SmartBlog on Leadership, writer Scott Eblin (3/12/12)

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The Price of Innovation

If you want people to innovate around you and at your company, the company culture must raise its risk tolerance. Failure IS an option if you want exploration.

Enjoy this useful study from SmartBrief/SmartBlog on Workforce (11/29):

Business owners Alan and Harriet Lewis, owners of Grand Circle and authors,

Driving With No Brakes, challenge the status quo.

They identify that, “Risk-taking doesn’t come naturally to everyone, and it can be hard for employees to embrace it.”
As Coach Cubas, I see companies unwilling to make mistakes and afraid to stray off their known path to pursue something unknown. This cautious thinking is dangerous. Continually doing the same things repeatedly, you run the risk of attrition burning your resources as well as the force of gravity pulling your organization backwards. Stepping out in front of fears, like using technology, with smart training and exposure saves a world of grief. The raw truth is that change is coming anyway. It’s a choice to be ahead of it or be run over by it.

Having trouble starting? Use your Coach Cubas’ Coins and use your bonus session.

How Do You Engage Employees to Peak Performance?

Most conversations around productivity quickly shift to performance. There is a fallacy that if we do more in an hour, for example, we will be more productive. This flawed metric only stresses people, creates errors and inaccuracies that have to be redone. Also, there is no time to value what was accomplished before moving on to the next task. This creates deep job dissatisfaction.

Ideas to address this issue:
1. Survey employees as to what is a peak performance for them. A reward has greater impact when the recipient perceives it as a reward.
2. What will it take to repeat their peak performance?
3. At what point are team members involved in an incentive process? What is important to them?
? Time off
? Gift card
? Simple acknowledgement and exposure to senior managers
4. What do they enjoy most about their position?
5. How much of the daily schedule includes what they enjoy?
6. What mechanism is in place to accept employee ideas? Example, frontline employees are a rich resource for process improvement because they are working the process daily. A quarterly acknowledgement will serve to generate enthusiasm with your team.

Example: Human Capital Institute <hci@hcibulletin.com>
“At Catholic Healthcare West (CHW) more than 60,000 caregivers and staff deliver excellent care to diverse communities across Arizona, California and Nevada every day. As one of the largest hospital systems in the nation, CHW has a unique challenge–uniting all of these facilities and employees under one common brand and cause. Their solution? Utilizing employee generated content (EGC). This “EGC” tells the stories of how each person at CHW “lives their life on purpose” as a way to unite 41 disparate facilities under the CHW system.”

Cautionary tale . . . What Is the link between job satisfaction and productivity, if any?
There are several myths that persist about performance, including the notion that employees with high job satisfaction are more productive, Harold D. Stolovitch writes. “[K]knowing an employee’s job-satisfaction level can actually bias performance-appraisal ratings,” he writes. “Managers tend to rate the performance of employees they hired more highly than those hired by others.”  Talent Management (9/2010)

Research shows that more frequent reviews are effective for skill development and employee growth. The employee is less likely to view the review process as punitive. Issues that require attention can be addressed early with an opportunity for learning. Direction to skill building and training can be built into the review process.

In the coaching process, it is called acknowledgement. A verbal or written “thank you” serves as acknowledgement that the person made a contribution, no matter how small. All people want to feel that they matter especially Gen X and Y.

At a time when employees are nervous about job security, this type of attention is useful to reduce stress and increase performance. It is all in the approach and how it is handled. MC

Call Michelle for your 30-minute, no-fee coaching session, 480-510-7166. Consider a team event.______________________________________________

Workplace Hoopla

These items are most commented on by clients. See how do they affect you?
Please send in your comments, and if we post your response you receive a complimentary 30-minute coaching session with me, Coach Cubas:

-Interruptions
These are like ants at a picnic. They are constant and erode concentration and focus. Consider that we are interrupted every three minutes by the phone, alarm signal, person dropping by or a request. It takes eight minutes to recover from that interruption. What does that tell you?

-Conflict
In the workplace is often caused by frustration. It can be a sense of not being heard, being misunderstood and spirals out of control. It can be an ego battle with someone who must always be right. We can only master our own response, not those of others. So, what will be your strategy this week for handling this stressor?

-Purpose
When was the last time you connected your job description and tasks to your overall purpose for being there? As a coach, I find one key reason for job dissatisfaction is a sense of meaningless, that what I do dunes’t matter. This is an opportunity for you to add a bit of yourself, leave your fingerprint on your project. Connect your team or your portion to something in the news, offer a tactic that has saved you time and resources. Ask for people’s ideas for improving the process. It will be appreciated.

-Influence
This invisible force cannot be underestimated. You can be a leader or follower based on this mysterious energy. Ever wonder how some people seem to have all the luck? Take a closer look at this strategy. Explore this resource (Download)

-Fulfillment
This compound word contains full and fill. What imagery comes to mind—the half full, half empty saying, physical hunger, spiritual longing? Consider what provides fulfillment in your life and bring it to work with you! Perhaps, a short affirmation, photo, contribution you made can be posted around you to remind you that you make a difference.

-Learning & literacy
A commitment to lifelong learning transcends attending classes. Consider your curiosity meter. Take a pulse. What are you curious about at work? How can you improve a process you use daily? How well do you understand the language of your industry and your position? Literacy has more to do with understanding and pace than reading.

Check out http://bit.ly/gUn5bo for more details. Mingle your thoughts with like minds: bit.ly/hFQyQe    -MC
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With my coaching “hat on”, here are types of circumstances that degrade productivity:
My personal favorite — “That’s not what I was hired to do!”.

What this person is really saying by spewing resentment is that it doesn’t matter what they do. The work goes unrecognized, unappreciated and isn’t tied to any purpose the worker can “buy into.”  Picture the proverbial work horse who just stops plowing mid row—this person just stopped!

Another way to view this situation can be finding the challenge. True, the expectations are higher for lower pay and no job security. Yet, by advancing the person’s learning, this can be an opportunity to build in job security, because it raises perception of how valuable you are with additional skills. How can I say that? The manager is asking for these specific skills—no mystery there!  Personal advancement, promotion, and business expansion rest most strongly on your perceived value and merit based on your observable skills. Actually, this perception can avert your being on the “layoff list.”

Here are other frustrations employees face:

The blurry line between administrative and innovative functions is maddening. Time must be scheduled for “free thinking.” Move away from your usual location for 20 minutes to clear your mental pathways.

People are given responsibility without authority to make decisions! There is a solution for this in The Ultimate Work plan. It’s called a letter of authority. Use it to get the authority you need to accomplish your next objectives and tasks.

How to be in the spotlight without looking like a know-it-all or show off. Sharpen your communication styles. You will be noticed for your leadership rather than your showmanship without standing on a chair in the middle of a meeting!
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Business Optimization

There is plenty of discussion around optimization in business. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is popular now to boost internet presence.

For our purposes, I would like to discuss Guest/Client/Prospect Optimization based on engagement. Often, in our eagerness to automate tasks, we forget that our business engages people, not machines.

A simple change for a major shift can be with the voice mail messages in your company. Nothing is more frustrating for a caller who becomes ensnared in an automated loop, and hears “how important their message is . . .” with no promise of when they will reach a human! They do not care to hear a multiple-choice option of if you are helping other customers or having lunch. You were not there to answer their questions. Instead, use this opportunity to promote an event, a product launch and leave a friendly tone.

Please refer to a smart article from the Email Insider: Hierarchy Of Optimization by David Baker, from earlier this year . It provides us with useful metrics for email. However, I see the application as a personal checklist for marketing and customer management as well.

The first item in Baker’s article is Acquisition. Interestingly, people focus on obtaining leads without understanding where the leads originate. Little testing is done to see if that is a viable, sustainable channel.

I recommend adopting one item and perfecting it before moving onto the next. You can judge how effective your efforts were and use the time to evaluate rather than be in constant, ineffective motion. This approach can help you to prioritize your time investment and assess your effectiveness.

Please share your strategies and I can post them here. -MC

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Intentional Culture Building 1—The Secret to Enterprise Energy™

Every business has a culture, overt or covert. Make it intentional and overt, and you have a power tool.

This tool attracts talent, attracts loyal customers and eases stress, because everyone knows what is expected of them and they know what to do!

Too much conversation spins around corporate culture. Not enough action is taken to implement and create a company dynamic. It frightens the “bean counters” (triangles) because they inherently are not geared to “people” skills. It is a communication style, not a flaw! When this type of style steers the ship, minimal communication is possible. Discussion is viewed as excuse making rather than stimulating innovation and creativity. Edward DeBono captures the essence of this in his book, Six Thinking Hatsand their models. One of our POD Teleclasses will be devoted to understanding this “open architecture” model. Details will be available on the website.)

Why Is Culture Important?

It is vital, especially in today’s blender environment, to have a playbook. People shifting between jobs in vertical industries creates dissonance. It takes a lot to continually have to adapt to new environments. Your company culture is a blueprint to assure consistency of your message, attitudes and direction.

The culture statement simply and clearly maps behavior, actions and expectations of the entire company. It says to your internal and external audiences how you conduct business. It removes surprises and builds confidence in working with associates within an organization.

Think of it as a blueprint, playbook or signature.

The Benefits of A Sound Culture

The benefits flow in easily. There is no need to “push” sales and services out the door. These benefits are magnets that draw what you need to you.

The benefits:

•  Generates credibility at all levels

•  Encourages loyalty base from inside and outside the company because of reliable role models

•  Increased mind share when using the “Give more, get more” approach

•  Maximizes existing resources—sustain time and money to established customers and personnel talent.

•  Removes suspicion and surprise. Everyone who comes in contact with you and your company knows what to expect.

Components to consider when intentionally building your company culture:

• Alignment of values

• Company language—internal “speak”, jargon, acronyms turned into plain English

• The spoken “scripts”—what is said about the company (media), within the company, as well as what you say it is.

• The unspoken language—what behavior is rewarded.

• The actuality—reality rather than illusion.

Actively Measure:

• Achievement

• Progress/Improvements

• Innovation

• What is Valued—teamwork, independence, creativity

Your Assignment—

Consider the companies morphing through violent market shifts. What makes them resilient?

Read the annual edition of Forbes Magazine, 100 Most Admired Companies To Work For.

Assess why they are so special.
Compare the outcomes and head in the direction of your dreams!

Now you can assess yourself with the EQ-i®. Email me to discuss details.

You CAN do this! You’re not alone. Just check in with me to monitor your progress.

Regards,

Michelle Cubas, Enterprise Business Analyst and Coach, CPCC; Enterprise Brand Strategist & Armchair Publisher

©2010 All rights reserved. Pocket Coach, Quick Studies, Secrets Series and Futurize Your Business are trademarks of Positive Potentials. Positive Potentials’ training and coaching materials are proprietary unless otherwise marked  and require permission to reprint or use publicly.
Coaching and Quick Studies™ can ease you through such a circumstance. They clarify issues, restore energy and perspective. We will fill in the “gaps” with you. Our only job is to point you to look differently at what is occurring and make you look good and confident.

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