8.13.21 – SSI – Paul Boucherle
Following a proven process will deliver stronger team building, communication and new thinking to address the realities of your business model in positive ways.
We left off last month with some insights on how change impacts your organization, recruiting and managing existing talent to reach your organizational goals. Change is the only real constant in life. How you personally adapt your thinking, guide your teams and serve your customers in more effective ways will depend on the actions you take today. The biggest concern with our executive clients is not ideas; it is execution of those ideas.
Last month, I left you with the process of the Matterhorn Action Process Plan (MAPP) and specifically engaging your team with collaboratively mapping out new processes to manage the changing flow and rapids of the security rivers you must safely cross.
The MAPP process accomplishes better execution of strategic plans. Following a proven process will deliver stronger team building, communication and new thinking to address the realities of your business model in positive ways. I would like to share the value in doing this process before you consider committing the time and expense. What is in it for you?
1) This process will help expose the gaps in what you currently think is being delivered in business value, bottom line profitability and meeting or exceeding customer expectations you promise with current marketing messages.
2) It will provide insights on how your team views challenges to delivering business promises under current standing operating procedures. This can elevate roadblocks in productivity, associate motivation and talent retention. When processes hinder associates from doing their best work, frustration will ensue, guaranteed.
3) You will be able to better identify the A players from those who need coached or need more attention and training. A great missed opportunity for most managers is moving B players into that A performance role. We all have had the unpleasant experience of dealing with an unanticipated resignation and the scramble to save them.
4) MAPPing processes visually provides a template for cross training for organizational resilience during unanticipated business challenges, like 2020 for an example.
The MAPP process starts with prioritizing what processes are underperforming or requiring a good deal of management time correcting issues. This can include sales, design, installation, logistics, service or administration support. Ask yourself where the most drama occurs, where profitability is challenging, or the most talent turnover happens. Select something that will have the greatest initial impact which will create interest from other department leaders. Here is a basic summary of the three-step MAPP process to ponder.
- Have a designated team (two to three team members and a team leader) draw the process map of how they do their work today, from start to finish. Provide instructions (Matterhorn Consulting can provide), get some butcher paper, tape it to the wall and turn them loose with a starting point (i.e., contract signed or service call received) through the finish point. This will include process steps, decision points and routing or feedback loops. It will be a bit messy the first time through and that is OK. Do not interfere; let them draw/layout the process how they do it, from their perspective. When completed, have them share their process with the company.
- Invite other associates/departments to add comments, suggestions and issues in red markers over the next week. Additional input as to how others view a process can be enlightening. Then reassign the original team to review the insights and comments to consider how the process could be improved.
- The team will then re-MAPP (new butcher paper needed) the process for future implementation including new needed tools, reconsidering redundant time-wasting steps, and then present the new process to the company.
The management team needs to evaluate, ask questions and decide on the next implementation step with that team. What roadblocks does this team face, what training or tools are needed to implement their new process? Listen carefully to improve communication, trust and progress. The dividend you will receive from everyone’s investment in mapping is time!
It makes recruiting new talent more of a process and will attract talent that appreciates a company culture of communication, professionalism and order. Secondly, and arguably more importantly after the 2020 experience, company resiliency through cross–functional training. Graphical process maps help people quickly grasp the workflow and their role in delivering results. Thirdly, you will onboard new hires and get them productive in a much shorter period of time.
Mapping processes can reset the entire company culture of communication and performance in a hurry. The secret sauce?
Those who have actively had a hand in improving processes will own and execute them much more efficiently through peer-to-peer expectations and coaching. This empowers teams while reducing your micromanagement time commitment; thus, allowing managers to focus on more important tasks. Like growing your business and profits. Process on!