Clarity: The Tool to Sculpt the Fog of Constant Change

The workplace is rapidly changing. Globalization, millennials, mergers, acquisitions, regime changes, hyper growth, massive turnover, and technology all contribute to creating a “What now?” culture in the workplace.

Everyone is scrambling to ensure they aren’t left behind; all while managing their teams like a college football coach having to constantly adjust to losing seniors and baptizing freshman. Now, more than ever, systems are required to create, sustain, and maximize a high performing culture.

While technology, products, and services are constantly changing and evolving, there is one constant in all businesses: people. So, if you’re going to put systems in place to sculpt the fog of change, it makes sense to ensure those solutions are anchored in your people.

That sounds nice, but is it possible? You bet it is. And it’s simpler than you might think.

When we hear the word “innovation,” it calls to mind highly technical advancements, scientifically ratified techniques, hyper progressive applications, and super complex machinations all working behind the scenes to make our crooked roads straight. Not so.

Innovation and change go hand-in-hand, especially when it comes to people. If you can understand what makes your people tick in order to ensure the best fit, you can make better decisions, build healthier interactions, prevent burnout, contextualize your approach to development, and drive success through talent. If you want to retain your best people, then you need to become a learning organization, strengthen your talent development programs, increase employee engagement, and nip complacency in the bud.

Only when your people are fully invested and engaged will you be able to respond faster to new business opportunities and threats, as well as increase the speed of workflow throughout your organization.

It all starts with clarity. When you create a culture of clarity, everyone knows exactly what they are doing, why they are doing it, and who is responsible for what.

Clarity starts at the top and permeates the entire organization. Innovation requires that clarity is pervasive and penetrates deep. The better you understand your people, the more clarity you will have to accomplish your goals and harness change for your success.

If you can recognize who wants to advance (as well as who doesn’t), enable effective communication, eliminate bias that applies to different people (ages, background, etc.), and demonstrate a willingness to invest in your people, you can minimize the time and effort it takes to reach and maintain peak productivity.

Managing workplace change requires clarity. Clarity is achieved through understanding your people and using that information to inspire them across the entire employee lifecycle. A high performing team that can respond to change has limitless potential.

People-related issues can tear apart a company, eroding even the most solid foundation built on the best products or services. On the talent acquisition front, making a bad hire can cost you through potential earnings, replacement costs, ineffectiveness, or worse, as a drain on morale.

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From a management perspective, ineffective leadership can result in stagnant growth, bungled initiatives, and even corporate collapse. Attrition, team dysfunction, failed acquisitions or strategic initiatives, and lack of productivity are all directly attributable to lack of leadership, mismanagement of people, and/or not putting the right people in the right roles.

The need for people data has never been more crucial to success. There are workforce analytics packages that are easy and simple to use, affordable, and straightforward to implement. Data-driven methodologies help you evaluate candidates, organize teams and develop employees, and give you unprecedented confidence and accuracy in the selection and development of the individuals you depend on to make your company successful.

After all, the better you know your people, the more effective you can be.

David B. Nast is CEO & managing partner of Nast Partners based in the Greater Philadelphia area. David is a Certified Workplace Behavioral Analyst and an award-winning Certified Business Coach with over 25 years of experience in human capital management, executive coaching, leadership development, talent management, training, change management, talent acquisition, career management, and executive search. 

For additional insights from David, visit his LinkedIn Pulse author pageand follow him on Twitter @DavidBNast. You can also email David at dave@nastpartners.com.

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