The resources provided on this page are comprised primarily of Blogs on various topics related to our areas of expertise. Additionally, we will be progressively adding our templates and models for your use and benefit.
These Resources can help you be the change agent in your environment.
Recently, employees from twenty different companies representing five separate industries were presented with six strategy statements and were asked to indicate which one represented their company. This research conducted on Consumer Social Responsibility by Timothy Devinney, Grahame Dowling and Pat Auger from the University of Technology in Sydney revealed that only 29-30% of a company’s employees could match their employer to its publicly espoused corporate strategy. Just to be clear, the statement that was misidentified wasn’t some vague attempt at a mission or vision statement. It was the company’s core statement of intent, their fundamental reason for being. What this actually means is that 70% of the time your people are out there operating in a different context. Take a moment to think about this as you ponder the amount of time, effort and resources you took to create the context for your organisation. Before you jump to any conclusions and call in the P&C police for a survey or spot check, you need to understand that all humans need a context within which to operate. In the absence of any context, we will all simply make up our own. Your role as the leader is to set the context and ensure that it is clearly understood by the entire organisation. This will ensure greater synergy, coordination and ultimately, results. It will also reduce misunderstandings, avoid mistakes and minimise business risk. Some of you may be frustrated by the fact that the statement is well published, positioned on every office wall and was outlined in your last annual keynote. Others may be wondering what you have to do to get people to read, or listen to what is fundamental and of singular importance to you. Interestingly the filtering of the message seems to be based in three fundamental areas; misalignment at your senior executive level, disengagement by your operational teams and subconscious apathy. Three suggestions for addressing the problem are; Firstly, make time with your senior team to choose the three most important strategic imperatives for your organisation and obtain complete commitment and alignment around their support. Make some choices about how each of you will actively support them every day. The frequency and consistency of the message is key. Secondly actively engage your operational teams in why they’re important, what they mean for the business and them individually, how you want them to behave in relation to their role in supporting them and what the future implications may be if you fail to secure their commitment. Finally, celebrate your achievement of each of the milestones you set along the way and ensure that everyone is involved. What is the level of engagement in your organisation and what do you do to ensure alignment? Let Change Agency know what you think.
Have you noticed how difficult it is becoming to stand out from the crowd, whether it is about getting the job listing, the meeting with the decision-maker, placing your candidate or having someone buy your service offering? Technology has shrunk the world and so you are in fact competing with more people. In a world of copies and knock-off products the only truly uniquely differentiated product is you A fundamental part of our evolution as a species has been our ability to stay alive. The decision to fight or flee was based on our judgement of what we were observing around us. The part of the brain responsible for keeping us alive is known as the amygdala, as small, walnut-shaped region of our limbic system. The amygdala is still very much in use today in the same ways however there are now strong social cues that affect our impressions of whether someone is a friend or foe. It is also interesting to note that all of our senses are engaged in arriving at the impressions we do; sight, sound, smell, taste and touch. Whether we like it or not, our impressions create judgements about the people we meet and please understand that this works both ways. Therefore what we all need to understand is that we already have a brand, maybe multiple brands depending on the context. Your personal brand becomes even more important in a technology driven world because your image is now your passport to the world of social media. Your profile becomes public property (within reason) and it will either be a ticket to a bigger game, a curio for discussion or a blank that will leave people guessing. At a personal level, your brand is built on your values, in the same way as a house in built on foundations and it needs to be linked to a goal. Consistency is the key to having your followers know what you stand for. According to Jeff Bezos, CEO Amazon, “A brand is what people say about you when you are not in the room”. So what do people say about you? People group us by gender, age, race, education, appearance, and the common mistake that people make relates to thinking that a brand is about your physical self; how you dress, what you wear, your posture, size, stance, level of fitness etc. Your brand is a complex persona that, in an increasingly technology-driven world, is becoming increasingly difficult to manage. This is why it is even more important for us all to actively manage our brand before others do it for us. Unfortunately there are some brands that are no longer good to be associated with. What may have seemed funny as a Facebook profile may come back to haunt you. Equally, your personal causes may not be everyone else’s cup of tea. In an increasingly shrinking world driven by technology, what others say (or don’t say) about you is critical as well. This is particularly important in a business context especially with LinkedIn being such a common research tool. Whilst a good Corporate Brand certainly helps there is no substitute for a strong personal brand. We can all recall situations where an individual has made a massive difference to our experience of dealing with a company. Many a recruitment company has suffered the loss of a great consultant who walks with their client and candidate contacts in tow. It is important that you don’t make the mistake of allowing your brand to be overshadowed by the corporate you represent. Whilst I am not proposing that you behave in a disloyal way, what I am saying is that no job lasts forever and whilst you may represent a different brand, your personal reputation will precede you………good or bad. So long as you do your best to live your values and be consistent, you will be ahead of the pack.