Creating a stellar organization involves setting the conditions to help people do their very best work. You could say that your team’s or your company’s success depends on designing the circumstances under which people can function most effectively. The better you set the conditions, the more profitable your business will be!
Two areas that deserve attention in this regard are
1) your ability to observe the results of interactions and relationships in your organization, and
2) how well your business can shift to becoming system-dependent instead of remaining person-dependent. Each element plays an important part in determining the long-term success of your group, organization, or enterprise.
Are You Carefully Observing Cause and Effect?
Your business success requires you to observe and fine-tune a series of cause-and-effect relationships within your organization. To achieve this objective, however, you will want to pay close attention to clues that indicate that something may be out of alignment.
That’s because no matter how well you think you may have set the conditions for success, you won’t know for sure if they’re set correctly until you carefully monitor how they are shaping or influencing what people are doing, saying, and feeling.
The circumstances can be the most obvious and intentional ones — such as those set forth in company policies to guide personnel development. In contrast, many cause-and-effect relationships can be much more subtle. In some situations, you’ll need a keen sense of awareness to detect their effects.
When the conditions aren’t ideal, you’ll see certain symptoms, such as people stumbling over obstacles and frequently hearing confusing or unclear messages from management. If you remain blissfully unaware of these areas of confusion, they can dissolve the morale and the bottom line of your organization like corrosive acid. If that happens, people can’t do their best, and the organization, business, company, operation, or team won’t achieve its goals.
Are You System-Dependent?
Great results generally arise from well thought-out systems and procedures that give personnel a consistent and coherent structure to work with, yet also provide people with the latitude to “wow” customers as needed.
Perhaps you have at least a few stellar performers in your organization who don’t cease to amaze your management, colleagues, and customers. (Or, maybe that performer is you, wearing every hat in your solo enterprise!)
It’s great to have such competent and talented people on board, but what exactly drives their success? Is it their own special formula for doing things that is so unique, no one can imitate it? Or is it expertise and knowledge built around a repeatable formula laid out in your systems and procedures? The difference can mean the long-term success or failure of your business. Why is that?
It’s easy to guess. Let’s say Ms. Star Performer or Mr. Know-It-All gets a better offer down the street, has a bad illness, or goes on an extended vacation. Suddenly that font of wisdom on whom everyone depended disappears at the drop of a hat. Who can competently fill in or take over? If there are no systems or procedures in place to explain how the work gets done, it may be a moot point.
Similarly, when employees have to guess everything as they go along, inventing their hand-offs to other people and groups, it shows a lack of system dependence. In good cases or in bad, being person-dependent rather than system-dependent can vastly limit your company’s potential to succeed.
In conclusion, by observing cause-and-effect relationships in your organization, and becoming more system-dependent than star-performer-dependent, you’ll lay a foundation for a sustainable operation that can produce satisfying, long-term results.