Employee alignment means different things to different people. To some, it means getting everyone on the same page. To others, it means looking at the bigger picture and understanding everyone’s role within it. Either way, good employee alignment is essential to helping employees stay focused and maximizing profits for your company.
Learning to embrace employee alignment is not only a critical factor in the overall success of a new company, but also the personal success of each employee and their engagement within the company.
According to Andre Lavoie, CEO of the talent alignment platform, startup founders can’t waste time ignoring this important success factor. Here are six essential ways he suggests to align focus and get employees on track:
1. Don’t depend on a broken telephone game. “The more people a message travels through, the more chance that message has of being drastically altered,” Lavoie notes. According to a study by Cognisco, the mistakes that can happen as a result of miscommunication cost approximately $37 billion a year. Instead, be direct and make sure everyone understands.
2. Link everyday efforts to overall goals. This will enable managers and employees to more clearly visualize how their team and individual work contribute to the larger company strategies and success. “All projects that are assigned to teams or individuals should clearly translate back to a goal,” explains Lavoie.
3. Everyone must make a commitment to the goals. The more the entire company interacts with and engages in company goals, the easier it will be for everyone to stay committed to them. “You can do this by helping employees visualize how their specific project dovetails with company-wide strategies,” suggests Lavoie.
4. Ditch the weekly meetings. I am skeptical about this myself, but Lavoie insists that weekly check-ins are not required: “With a clear and consistent view of goals and where employees stand through the company’s hierarchy, weekly meetings and quarterly gatherings won’t be necessary in order to restate those goals. Integrating goals into everyday life is enough to keep the meetings at bay. Most importantly, it ensures employees don’t get caught up in small tasks and miss the larger picture.”
5. Recognize, reward and play to strengths. A Gallup study found strengths-based employee feedback resulted in a 12.5 percent increase in productivity. Understanding what employees’ strengths are and utilizing them to align employees with the company’s goals will help everyone succeed.
As Lavoie explains, “Letting everyone know their great work is aligned with the company and is regularly recognized by the leaders will motivate them to continue to do more great work.”
6. Encourage transparency from the top. “Maintaining transparency throughout the entire company can allow leaders to see the productivity of employees and ensure everyone is working towards the same goals,” Lavoie says. Transparency also translates to a much healthier and efficient work environment.
When done right, employee alignment can be the defining factor in the success of a new company. Adjust your focus to align employees and get them on track by staying committed to the company goals, being transparent and communicating directly to the source. This will help employees feel more engaged and motivated to play a role in the company’s success and stay aligned with its goals.