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What Will It Take For My Staff To Understand Our ‘Big Picture’?

Every organization, big or small, faces the issue of getting employees to understand, appreciate and align with the vision and goals that will drive profitability and success. However, when the message is pitched very high employees don’t get it. If it is ‘dumbed’ down staff feels like they are treated like kids.

Pratap, the go-getting internal communicator at Mark Ltd, a leading sports equipment firm with over 4000 employees across 5 offices in the APAC region was finding it tough to explain the way forward to his leadership and employees.

His leadership had faith in his abilities to deliver the goods when it came to Town Halls and editing e-mails but they wanted him to demonstrate his capabilities with engaging employees on the company’s plans.

Here is a conversation he had with his CEO.

Jack: “Pratap, as you know that Mark Ltd is gearing up for a whole new strategy where we compete with the top brands of the world. This is a defining moment for our company – we are 25 years old as an organization, we have great clients, revenues over 500 million and a great team. It is time for us to make a difference to the world of sport!”

Pratap: “Jack, this is exciting news. Can you tell me what the new strategy is?”

Jack: “We are now changing our positioning to be seen as the cutting edge sports maker who makes the world a healthier place! Earlier we were only focused as an equipment manufacturer. We are now redefining the world. You know our company values of enterprising and driven are all about change and here is a great reason for change!”

Pratap: “Hmm…redefining the world? So, how will we achieve our vision?”

Jack: “We get our sales teams to go after large accounts and crack the global markets. We will empower the distributors to stock as much as of our equipment. The marketing team will create campaigns. Our partners will be rewarded for their collaboration. In the end we double our revenues. I am concerned that we are not getting our employees connected to the Big Picture.”

Pratap: “Well, our employees are very young – average age is 25 across the board. They are passionate about technology; want a lot of autonomy and are keen to drive how we make a difference.  We recently changed our strategy and we are now introducing a new one. Employees are wondering why we aren’t sticking to one strategy. Not sure, they will get our new strategy.”

Jack: “Hmm. That’s where I need you your help to paint that Big Picture! You can do it. If you repeat the messages often employees will get it. Put up a lot of posters, create some videos, get all the bells and whistles out….go for it..”

Pratap is confused. On one hand he knew that if the employees aren’t aligned no matter what Jack did on the positioning the company wouldn’t rally together. He needed something to get everyone aligned to the Big Picture.

What can Pratap do? How can you help him think through the connection to the Big Picture?

2 thoughts on “What Will It Take For My Staff To Understand Our ‘Big Picture’?

  1. For any new introduction, be it a strategy or a policy change, the first question that people generally would ask is, “What is in it for me?” Perhaps, this question must be answered in terms of how the new strategy will help them – 1) the new technology that they can learn, 2) the improved brand image of the company that can enhance their value in the market and 3) their personal growth with the growth of the company.

    Regular communication through mailers and posters on the uniqueness of this strategy and the progress that it is making must be done. The small contribution of each employee in making the larger impact on the business in making the strategy work, bringing in the desired results must be valued and showcased.

    If the employees are given to believe that the new strategy is BY THEM and FOR THEM, I feel that will do half the job. I would say, Pratap must first organize town halls and use inperson communication mechanism to introduce the new strategy. Through that forum he must also inform the staff, what were the positives and negatives of the old strategy, what worked, what could have been better and why this new strategy is important for the growth of the company. Invite feedback from the staff on the new strategy and help them feel part of the decision making.

  2. Humans have this innate hunger to grow and that needs to be tapped, they also have a mistrust of any top down strategy shrouded in management lingo. Vineet Nayyar’s strategy of employees first, customers second is something that is needed. People want to work at the best place, cutting edge work. That’s what his strategy tapped.

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