There are many factors that affect the performance of a company: the vision and mission, the structure and processes, and the people. There is an assumption, particularly in high tech companies, that changing one will have a positive impact on the others. And while that can be the case, changing a company’s structure and processes in the hope of changing people’s behavior can often have exactly the opposite result. Why is that?
An organization is like a house. The company’s mission, vision, make up the foundations. The walls are your structure (left) and processes (right) and the roof represents the key performance indicators (KPI’s). But do you ever feel that something is still missing? Or that your organization could perform even better?
The walls of the house are the building blocks to running an effective organization. The company structure and vision are point solutions; its only purpose is to define an organization’s hierarchy. The company’s processes are linear solutions that follow certain sequential steps. A clear structure and standardized processes help employees be more productive and efficient.
Out with the old…
However, companies that only focus on the walls are not fully meeting the needs of their employees. This approach is what I call the 20th century organizational model. The problem with this model is that no attention is paid to the inside of the house.
This means that the people and the company culture are not being considered. And did you know that 70% of your organization’s effectiveness comes down to the behavior of the employees?
…in with the new
So, how can you also meet your employee needs to ensure your organization is performing at the highest level of effectiveness? I believe that there is a new way, the 21st century way. In this new approach, structure and processes are still important building blocks, but the focus is on what’s going on inside your organization: employee behavior.
Behavior is the missing link. It affects everything from meetings and discussions to productivity. Unlike processes or structure, interactions change every second. The challenge for companies is that behavior and interactions are not linear. For example, any remark made by a team member during a meeting has a direct effect on all other team members. One team member may react positively, another team member negatively. Any reaction may lead to new reactions, building a trace of positive/negative utterances during the meeting.
It is therefore critical to create an atmosphere that promotes positive behavior, as well as ensuring the supporting structure and processes are in place. This enables the development of high performing teams where every individual is motivated to help the organization reach its goals.
By taking your organization’s behavior into account, you will better understand people’s individual fears, needs and talents and how these patterns work in relation to your company’s structure and processes. Addressing behavior, processes and structure all together will help to ensure that everyone in your organization performs at their best.
Behavior + Structure + Processes = High performing teams
Ensuring your employee’s have the right environment to think positively and act creatively will also enable them to develop better processes and optimize the company and its culture. Having an exciting and vibrant company culture is a fundamental requirement for today’s new generation of employees.
Be sure to join us next time where we will be looking deeper into the behavior of high performing teams and their interactions