The Service Profit Chain is a theory and business model evolved by a group of researchers from Harvard University in the nineties. The main conclusion is that loyal customers are the result of loyal, engaged employees. Furthermore, leading service organizations are using the model to quantify the impact that loyal, engaged employees have on the bottom line. They’re accomplishing this by looking closely at each step of how their organization creates value for customers. Read more
Every company wants its people to work together towards the company’s goals. In an earlier post, we suggested that it’s very difficult to create high performance teams by dissecting attributes of great teams because teams and organizations are complex systems. The solution is to not just try to recreate the characteristics of high performing teams, but also to look at the big picture and leverage something called systems thinking. One of these big picture things is that our concept of working together is part of the problem. We tend to think of collaboration as a horizontal phenomenon. While this is true, it is incomplete. What is missing is the concept of working together vertically throughout the company, which requires a new way of thinking. But before we dive into collaboration, let’s take a step back and talk about teamwork. Read more
We believe that organizations are on the cusp of an era of enlightenment when it comes to being innovative. At the core of of this enlightenment is the fact that we should probably stop calling progress innovation. Using the word innovation conjures the wrong associations, which leads to the wrong activities for reliably creating value. We believe that most organizations would significantly benefit from decreasing the focus on finding brilliant ideas and increasing the focus on effective collaboration that drives progress and real value for customers and stakeholders. Here’s the basis on which we believe these things. Read more
The traditional hierarchical view of organizational structure lends itself to a style of leadership where division of labor, chain of command and top-down communication dominates. While an org chart with the CEO/President at the top may still have its place, we believe that the way organizations should increasingly operate is with empowered employees playing a more prominent role in taking ownership of success. Employees should have the clarity and autonomy to decide which work will deliver the best results. They should be enabled to collaborate across hierarchical levels to get the support they need to be successful. And employees should be able to assume leadership as much as the management team. We believe this is a key new paradigm for a more agile and engaged organization. Read more
Being part of a high-performing team is an amazing experience. Many incredibly smart people have dissected the best teams to understand what are the key attributes that lead to superlative performances. Yet, despite knowing so much, it’s still frustratingly hard to recreate the magic that just makes some teams click. Why is it so hard to create high-performing teams? Part of the problem lies in the fact that we try to dissect team performance. It helps if you also approach high-performance teams by taking a look at the whole, thinking bigger picture and applying what’s called systems thinking. Read more
We spent the last five months speaking with startup leaders from across North America to gain insights on what makes successful startups so high-performing and attractive to top talent.
More than ever, companies are placing an emphasis on making their workplaces as great as possible to attract and retain top talent. Although perks, benefits, and flexibility are enough for some, the growing number of employees, particularly Millennials, require deeper, more meaningful incentives. Specifically, more and more people are looking for a strong connection to purpose and work that gives them meaning in the form of believing in the company’s mission, connections to co-workers and the opportunity to grow and develop as an individual.
The employee engagement is based on Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. It reflects an employee’s engagement level as determined by how well their needs are being met.
Dynacare uses SoapBox to connect employee insight to key decision makers. Employees can share, vote, and comment on ideas that will impact the organization’s top priorities, and leaders can add responses to the ideas that are moving forward to keep everyone in the loop on progress. Read more about how Dynacare uses SoapBox in the case study.
Our Customer Success team helps our customers build a program to support the growth of their SoapBox community. One of the most important elements of that program is the Governance structure (read more about the Key Elements here). Each community appoints Innovation Partners, who are leaders responsible for evaluating, responding to and implementing ideas.
In this interview, we’re sharing what goes on behind the scenes for one of our most successful SoapBox Innovation Partners.
Sales and marketing alignment is difficult to achieve, but it’s also one of the best opportunities for improving business results. When marketing and sales teams are aligned, marketing ROI, sales productivity, and top line growth all go up. To get full alignment, it’s not enough to have leaders aligned, you need alignment with as many people on both teams as is feasible. To do this, people need to have an opportunity to provide input, contribute to decision-making and provide feedback.
Real buy-in involves at least some element of co-creation. It invites discussion, debate, and allows everyone to feel even more vested in the outcome. – From “How To Get Real Buy-In For Your Idea“
Here are some of the ways where the opportunity to include more people in the process typically go wrong, why it matters and ultimately what can be done to facilitate deeper collaboration between sales and marketing.
One thing customers realize after launching their SoapBox is that some of the ideas from an employee idea program will align with projects that are already underway. At first, these ideas may not appear to be all that helpful. It’s not an idea that’s going to open up new opportunities or provide a new solution to a challenge. However our customers also eventually realize and point out that there are unexpected benefits to these ideas and that they should also be managed. Read more
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