From the observations of many managers we have learned that organizational alignment is linked to people’s perceptions.
That is why communication is a key success factor in the implementation of any organizational strategy.
Things to watch for
Technology Executive Gary Clarke reminds us to keep thing simple, and cautions us about pre-existing biases:
“In the past I have framed the “big picture” as simply as possible. I then meet with each manager, and if need be, with each person to link the big picture to their activities. I always use a whiteboard to help create a visual map.
I make certain that each manager can articulate the big picture. You can expect that each person’s version of the big picture will vary to meet either their bias, or limitation in comprehension.”
To better understand some of these biases CEO Eugene Rembor adds:
“There are people who can’t see colors while many others can. There are people who have no night-vision and there are people who simply will never see the big picture. I guess you have to accept it as a fact of live – otherwise every single employee would be a director, VP or CEO because they could see and comprehend the big picture.”
Program Manager Robert Jakobson offers the following suggestion for dealing with individuals who may have trouble seeing the big picture:
“Keep in mind, not everyone needs or wants to see the big picture to contribute to it. In fact many, find that a big picture distracts them from focusing on the element of the picture they’ve defined as their contributing portion. For these people – insure they understand their area of focus, and that it does in fact connect. So even if they don’t “see” the big picture they see how they connect to it.”
Communicating the big picture effectively
Business Developent expert James Potter suggests:
“Learn to paint really well, explain, draw, talk, telephone, engage and explain it again.
Show them the big picture, get them to draw it for you, get them to understand every action has a reaction and the potential chain of events that unfolds.”
Finally, be sure to communicate the big picture to your staff in a positive and memorable way. Web Development firm Owner Eileen Bonfiglio used the following exercise:
“The most successful and memorable meeting I held on this topic was a breakfast meeting in where I brought donuts. I asked everyone to focus on the center and tell me what was lacking or missing, tons of responses. I then asked them to look at the whole donut and tell me what they saw. They got it and remember it to this day – keep your eye on the donut, not the hole.”