Objective alignment is one of the key factors behind any business success story, and this applies whether you’re a team of two or two hundred employees. Within any organisation, people are likely to have a range of different ideas both about what they want from the business and where they see it going in the future. If everybody is steering in different directions, then no matter how determined or motivated they are, no forward motion will ever be achieved. And even if an organisation does somehow manage to progress, it’s highly likely they’ll soon be hearing cries of “man overboard” from those people who were trying to head the other way.
In the business world the desired outcomes, outside of something as obvious as profitability, are rarely clear cut and simple. This means that in order to achieve and progress, everyone needs to be aligned to common objectives. If those objectives are aligned with strong habits to manage them, and regular conversation to check-in, then it’s much more likely that your team will be happier heading in the same direction.
In many cases, management will introduce company objectives without consensus from each member of the team. This very common mistake is precisely why so many change initiatives fail.
Looking at even the most basic human psychology shows you that humans, on the whole, are incredibly resistant to change. The best way to bring about decisive and proactive change is to involve everyone from the very start. This helps team members engage with the strategy and get involved with the resulting decisions. If a person has been actively involved with a decision, they are much less likely to resist any change which comes about due to that decision.
In order to get your team into this open, well-aligned mindset, it is essential that you create as much transparency as possible around your company objectives and values. Having a set of values which are openly shared and accessible is hugely important if you want everyone to work together towards your team goals.
The values of your business should define the way that your team members work towards their goals. If every member of your team is working towards common goals, as well as working with the insight of the company values behind them, you’re going to find yourself with some highly motivated people on your hands.
What’s more, adherence to the same values in conjunction with ongoing involvement in setting goals should mean that each team member feels accountable for achieving the common goals of the business.
Added to that, in a space of open communication, your team is more likely to speak up if they don’t agree. This stops people working towards conflicting goals, as anything potentially disagreeable can be challenged at a preliminary stage without fear of repercussions.
Working with purpose
In order for people to be able to work with purpose, they have to not only be aware of the overarching team goals and objectives but be actively engaging with them on a routine basis. Ensuring that your teams are connected with not only their own goals, but the wider business aims means that every individual’s work will be contributing to the same end goal in one way or another.
Working with purpose isn’t something that just happens; this isn’t going to be an overnight culture transformation. An internal culture of purposeful working is something which, as a leader, you need to be nurturing and fostering in every individual in order to help them bring out their a-game every single day. A successful, purpose-driven environment is one in which clear priorities inform decision-making, at every single level.
A common goal
- The final, absolute and ultimate goal is this. For every person within your business, at whatever level.
- Their work takes on meaning and purpose when they understand its importance.
- They feel ownership of it.
- They know how it fits into the bigger picture for the business.
- They can actively see the progression happening because of it.
OKRs help you to work collaboratively, understand your goals and get more work done.
If this is what you want for your business (and why wouldn’t it be?!), get in touch with us. We’d love to hear from you.