A number of organisations’ leaders will generally say that alignment is crucial for them. Given how dynamic the environment has become today, there are a number of myths that have come about in terms of alignment. Several common myths have come about when it comes to actually achieving alignment, which is one of the biggest objectives and necessary key results for any organisation or company.
Here are some of the most typical misconceptions on alignment and how to properly ensure alignment in your company.
All it takes for year-long alignment in a company or organisation is a single yearly meeting
Times have changed, and things continue to shift quite quickly. With that in mind, the annual meeting in terms of strategic planning is now outdated and does not help as much. A strategy that seemed great in Q1 may no longer apply in Q2, if not replaced by something else entirely when Q3 rolls around. It's important to stay on the same page as things happen.
When there is alignment amongst executives, it follows that alignment is present for the entire company
Most organisations have their alignment conversations only on the executive level. When the leadership team is aligned, it doesn’t mean that the rest of the organisation are going in the same direction. Choosing to simply assume this can prove to be costly for the organisation in the long run.
While it is true that the executive level must lead and downright drive any new strategies, whether or not the strategy succeeds depends on all levels being equally and fully committed.
Individual contributors and managers alike can and should contribute to the strategy to be executed appropriately. For them to be able to do this properly, they need to have a proper understanding of it in the first place. The smallest misunderstandings about where the company is headed can lead to bigger problems, like a conflict in decisions and even full-on divergence.
An excellent way to solve this is for the company plan to become cloud-based. That way, all the organisation’s goals, initiatives and strategies can be updated and shared in real-time. Any changes will be immediately brought to the attention of various teams. Leaders must still keep their members in the loop despite this software, though.
Goals naturally cascade from top to bottom when alignment is achieved
Vertical alignment in an enterprise exists, which is the conventional top-down take many end up using. On the other hand, horizontal alignment is what many either don't know exists or don't choose because it's tricky. When you have a business that is highly interconnected, a single team will not be able to reach any lofty goals by themselves. Customers have grown to expect more integrated solutions, and with that, teams need to be able to have synchronicity when it comes to products and services.
Alignment helps your company or organisation grow your business together. It shouldn’t just be at the executive level, either. Everyone in the company should be updated on what strategies are in effect in order to best help each other.
Looking into improving organisational alignment? Contact SKILLFIRE today! We help businesses focus on creating incredible customer outcomes by uplifting their leadership capability and aligning their people on what’s most important.