Who Are We and Where Are We Going?

By Tim Connor, CSP

After 34 years of consulting with clients and speaking to groups of managers, executives and salespeople, I have discovered that there is a common problem among many businesses today. It is a sense of identity, or, in the words of one manager I interviewed last year, “I don’t know who we are or where we are heading, and yet I am supposed to help us get there.”  These feelings are common among many workers today whether expressed or kept to themselves.

A clear lack of communicated, understood, reinforced and believed-in direction is at the root of many organization’s problems today. Oh yes, they will say that turnover, competition, finding good employees, global issues, the government, the weather, suppliers or Aunt Sally is the real culprit contributing to their lack of profits, growth, market share or lack of competitiveness, but don’t be fooled. A lack of clear communicated direction and identity in an organization will contribute to:

  • Poor internal communication.

  • Low morale.

  • Poor productivity.

  • High sales costs.

  • Vulnerability to competition.

  • Reduced market share.

  • Employee turnover.

  • Reduced sales and profits.

  • Mistakes and more mistakes.

  • Wasted time and effort.

  • Too many meetings in which nothing is accomplished.

  • Redundancy.

  • Customer dissatisfaction.

  • Customer turnover.

  • Vendor turnover.

  • Poor quality.

  • Poor customer service.

  • High receivables.

  • Poor external communication.

  • Confusion internally and externally.

  • A lack of positive growth.

  • A lack of creative innovation.

  • A lack of clear goals.

  • Poor employee development.

  • Failure.

If this list is not enough to give you, as a manager or executive, cardiac arrest, I don’t know what will. Any 3 of the above 20 items can put you in the dumpster. Don’t risk it.

First; determine who you are and where you want to go or who you want to be. Second, communicate this to all employees with clarity and constancy. Third, reinforce this message with integrity and repetition.

Read other articles and learn more about Tim Connor.

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