From small to large organizations, business owners and company leaders are always looking for that edge that will lead to success. But what identifies success? For one company, it may be increasing sales; for another, reducing costs. Other business leaders may celebrate success by achieving their strategic goals; while some through employee growth and retention. The metrics may differ from company to company, but seeking success remains constant for all business leaders.
Still, business success can often feel elusive, like a shadowy figure peeking around the corner. Yet achieving organizational success is not so much about reaching the destination as it is strategically progressing and improving along the journey.
Operating a growth-focused business is much like steadying a three-legged stool. Each leg is as important as the other two to remain stable for the user. When one leg is wobbly? Well, we know what happens.
There are three pillars to building a solid organization, achieving growth, and maintaining stability. Like the three-legged stool, each pillar supports the others and is equal in its importance. When leaders build and manage their business around People, Process, and Communication, success will follow.
When employees are engaged, empowered and valued, they are committed to the organization and its success. When leaders value people, and support their development, attrition is low and an organization benefits from the best that employees have to give.
Much is discussed in business news and around conference room tables about employee engagement. It’s more than a trendy topic. It’s real, yet often difficult to define and measure. It is even more challenging to achieve.
According to a Gallup poll, although employee engagement rose slightly in 2018, it remains at a dismal 34% across all industries in the US. Organizational leaders who earnestly believe and steadfastly support all efforts to engage staff and teams, will realize the benefits through employees’ commitment to the company’s vision and success.
In the bestselling book “Good to Great” by Jim Collins, he highlighted the success of companies when they committed to getting the right people on the bus, and in the right seats, before determining where to drive the bus. The metaphor has become ubiquitous among senior leaders who recognize the value of matching the right people with their skill set to assist the company.
When facing significant change and disruption, it’s best to have a busload of people who can adapt to change and excel through the storms. Said Collins, “great vision without great people is irrelevant.”
It’s also critical for organizations to have a commitment to develop and train their people. What’s your strategic workforce plan? Do your employees have the right skills for today, and tomorrow? Businesses today are enhancing their employee training and development initiatives to engage generational learners, embrace technology, and create paths for career-minded employees.
The people in an organization will always be foundational to its success. Leaders: value your people and engage them in the company’s strategic vision. Leverage everyone’s knowledge and skillset to excel. Train and develop your people to build a succession path, reduce the skills gap, enhance productivity, and reinforce their commitment to the organization.
The practice of process improvement methods can engage everyone in an organization while building a culture of empowerment and continuous improvement. Each contributor, at every level of an organization, plays a role in identifying how something can be improved. How can steps in a process be reduced to save time, money, and resources? In an organization that embodies a culture of continuous improvement and employee empowerment, these questions become natural and just a part of everyday work. In today’s fast-paced economy where time is a commodity, the urgency to continual improve processes throughout the organization is paramount.
From redundant steps in the Accounts Payable/Receivables department, to the cost it takes to build a product, or provide a service, there are bottlenecks in any process. Identify the current processes and apply strategic methods to improve them.
Outdated or inefficient processes in a business result in excess cost, schedule delays, and strained communications among work streams. In a competitive changing marketplace, the proficiency of a business’s processes directly impacts its bottom line and growth.
Prior to tackling how to improve a process, the project team must set a standard by which to measure process improvement efforts. It’s important to establish a baseline measurement to evaluate the impact of the improvements. This is a critical step that is often skipped. When there is change to a process, to how something is executed, it’s vital to measure the impact to know its effectiveness and adjust the process as needed.
When organizations merge the strength of their people with a commitment to process, they create a supportive environment for continuous improvement. Creating a culture of continuous improvement is about a commitment to always working towards making things better. Initiated by Toyota, the practice of continuous improvement is no longer reserved for the manufacturing industry. The methodology transcends all industries and organizations that are committed to consistently improving.
A commitment to communication efficiency can transcend an organization. In a structured flow of vertical and cross-functional information, decisions are timely, problems are solved sooner, and employees at all levels of the organization are regularly informed.
The repercussions of poor communication in the workplace can be severe and widespread. According to a 2018 report from The Economist Intelligence Group, 44% of respondents indicate that miscommunication has caused a delay or failure to complete projects in the workplace.
Most leaders, and employees at all levels, will acknowledge that communication is important within an organization. Yet, how does an organization define effective communication? As well, how do you tackle improving communication?
Enhancing communication within an organization is not about sending more emails or solely investing in the latest technology to centralize discussion. As highlighted in the Process section, streamlined processes are critical to operating a business. Communication in an organization is itself a process. It’s about a consistent structured approach to exchange information both vertically and across workstreams. The communication process should be culturally embedded in the organization and continually improve in efficiency.
In a structured vertical communication process, information consistently rolls up and down each layer within an organization. The pathway limits information bottlenecks, contributing to timely decisions in a competitive environment.
Across workstreams, communication transcends industry and technology, contributing to a collaborative and agile culture. Information is shared from multiple perspectives, inspires innovation, aligns company goals, helps solve problems, and maximizes accountability at all levels of an organization.
By maximizing processes improvements, wielding data for strategic decision making, and addressing technology advancements, your organization can significantly improve efficiencies, processes, and quality improvement within your healthcare organization.
RTG Solutions Group is a business solutions firm that helps healthcare organizations identify and conquer process inefficiencies, master the use of data, and employ technology to establish a culture of continuous quality improvement. Contact us today!