Founder and co-CEO of Xfactor.io.
There is no right way to unify your business, but there are a few ways I’d begin the unifying process. Starting with messaging and planning, then ensuring leaders are communicative and accountable and finally building a healthy company culture for employees.
Step 1: Messaging And Planning
The first step of building a unified business is messaging and planning. I’d advise any CEO to answer the following three questions in order to solidify messaging and build an ever-evolving plan:
1. What are you building?
2. Why are you building it?
3. Who are you building it for?
Keep these answers in mind to create your “north star” and solidify your vision of where the company is headed. Then ensure this messaging and vision is disseminated to all employees—regardless of team or level. This helps to guarantee all employees know the goals and are working toward these goals.
Once there are clear goals and messaging in place, leaders must have an always-on, ever-evolving plan driven by factual data. Without one, there’s no single direction to unify your teams, which causes misinformation, dissensions, delays and lost revenue. This means organizations also need technology that is able to aggregate data from all sectors and provide high levels of visibility into the data.
Having unified technology and data is as equally important as unifying people. If you can’t see every aspect of your business, you won’t be able to create accurate predictions, learn from mistakes or properly communicate with your people.
Step 2: Communication And Accountability
Once messaging and planning are complete, it’s time to focus on leadership. Unification works top-down, so establishing a solid executive team and strong leaders is necessary to create a completely unified company.
In the technology space, leadership goes far beyond communication and accountability, although these are arguably two of the most critical traits. Businesses are constantly reevaluating critical decisions, and the current macroeconomic climate is making these decisions more urgent. When leaders leave their teams out of important choices, it will likely cause strain across different departments—thus, frequent communication is key, and doing so will help your employees connect the dots from decisions to your overall business goals. More importantly, leading with transparent communication and accountability will help each department understand how to interact with each other to reach these goals.
Step 3: A Healthy Company Culture
A healthy company culture is at the center of any successfully unified business and successfully unified firms will help to maintain a healthy culture.
Just as open communication is critical in today’s landscape, a company’s culture must also be rooted in transparency. Organizations can promote a healthy company culture in two different ways: (1) by controlling individual recognition and (2) by encouraging collective growth. To begin, recognition for employees should be given on an individual basis. This helps create a sense of uniqueness and reinforces the value that employees bring to your organization. Whether they took a risk or strongly contributed to an initiative, that should be the way they are praised.
Additionally, encouraging collective growth can lead to strong relationships within your organization. The idea that feedback is a give-and-take further promotes a healthy company culture and leads employees to take ownership/accountability for their work. Leading with confidence also plays a role in creating a healthy work environment. It’s only through a strong company culture that your business can thrive.
Unify To Live Long And Prosper
If operational transparency is key to business growth and unification is key to operational transparency, then unification is key to business growth.
Especially in uncertain economic conditions, unification can help organizations reach the golden standard of growth. Unification keeps an organization on task, builds strong leadership and segment transparency, and fosters a collaborative and healthy company culture. Finally, unification allows organizations to properly plan so they can enjoy healthy growth and success even during turbulent market periods.
Knowing how to implement unification within your organization could prove to be the difference between growth and decline.
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