While as business leaders and employees we cannot always be performing at our peak, we can certainly hope to reach this peak more often. Tim Goodenough, Executive Coach, says there are simple steps that can be taken to make this a possibility.
Firstly, study the TED talks and books of people who have had success in areas that are related to your business, specifically in terms of employee engagement.
“The answers are out there,” he says.
Also, ask yourself some key questions:
- Are you living your values and are you consistent? If not, how come?
- What is your strategy to build deep connections with the individuals that you work with?
- Are you able to also have safe challenging conversations when necessary?
- Does your business have a meaningful purpose that is referenced and reinforced?
He also highlights the importance of measuring business performance – within in any organisation, regardless of size or sector.
“Work backwards from the big goal (which hopefully you have collaborately created and that has a big ‘why’ attached to it),” he explains. “Break it down into stages, what’s half way, what’s half of that. What are the key milestones?”
He adds: “If achieving that big goal is a 10 , where are we now? How come that number?”
Also, what are the behaviours that if we do X on a daily basis will give ourselves the best chance of reaching that goal?
In his view, if you want to go deeper into the behaviours that are linked to intangible outcomes like, “customer satisfaction, engagement, efficiency, etc) then you need to spend more time on coming up with a measurement for your key intangibles.
“In Neuro-Semantics we use the Benchmarking model. Benchmarking is the skill of measuring the intangible, for example if we decided one of our values is heart in the business:
As an example, at a level 5 out of 5 (mastery) what will all the behaviors be that would indicate we are performing and living “heart” as a company? (eg. greeting customers with a smile, delivering on our service promise whilst also looking for opportunities to provide customer with unexpected value, etc). Take the time to map out the behaviours of all the levels of skill from 0 to 5, and although this part may be challenging, using this scale and referencing these benchmarks for growth and feedback is a lot easier to do and very powerful.
Driving Employee Engagement
“Instead of referring to the rule book, history book or what worked for you, engage with your employees,” he advises. “For us to achieve X goal with Y meaning, what is the best way we can be configured to doing that. What works for us, what doesn’t work for us? What do we believe are our Critical Success Factors and what are our potential blocks or interferences?”
He also notes that you need to create and maintain a high quality, inclusive culture with deep meaning attached to it and the company’s goals.
“Then role model quality leadership and the consistent performance of values whilst connecting, engaging and empowering your staff – and skillfully and safely challenging them when they fall short,” he says. “If you do this consistently, you are likely to create an environment where peak performance flourishes. This is hardly new information. The challenge is how much of it you can actually live and perform!”
To learn more about maximizing performance and to hear other industry experts present on the various aspects of running a successful business, book your ticket to attend the Business Excellence Forum & Awards in November 2015. Visit www.thebusinessexcellenceforums.com for more information or call 012 665 1015.