When I look back at my own journey at PeopleStrong and other enterprises I have been associated with (especially start-ups), I see five key-steps which are not necessarily sequential in nature, but there are intertwined with each other. Let’s try and look at each one of them as we write #ThenNewCodeofWork:
1. Why: The Brand Promise: Have we crafted & communicated the “why” & the “brand promise” to our teams, investors, customers & society? It’s not the mission & vision statements only but the spirit behind them, can we sum up all of them on one sheet and it can act as a constitution of a company. (Attached below is a reference image of one such “Why” which worked for us at PeopleStrong).
2. ÖKR”- Converting the “Why” into “the #NewWorldofPerformance&Goals: John Doerr’s legendary work on his book “Measure What Matters” is what I would urge you to look at if you haven’t already. He explains how the “why” is converted into objectives & key results (OKRs) for a defined time (usually a quarter). Everyone’s goals, from entry level to CEO are transparent to the entire organization and brings an agile culture. However, it is important to get the “why” right and make sure it is not another “Balanced Scorecard”. Highly recommended!
3. Transferring and Empowering: The biggest challenge of growth is not the resources but the lack of capacity expansion in the existing leaders. The moment you transfer half of your work (assume your company is growing @50%) to your other colleagues & they do the same with their teams. This not only creates only bandwidth but uplifts the organisational performance. Remember, it is not easy to transfer work and is equally hard for the other person to take on the new higher order work. Only when there is a true sense of connection to the cause, will there be positive results. If the “why” and “ÖKRs” are accomplished, even then it is hard to achieve this step.
4. Freedom – Enablement and Control: You should not control instead enable your team member to succeed or fail with your full support & enablement. Some of it may sound paradoxical but leaders find this stage behaviourally very hard to deal with, remember to let go of the temptation: “Let Me Do It OR you will fail, if you do it this way” instead ask questions: “what are the options you have and how rationally(data) you have arrived at decisions”.
Leaders also will have to be in control of the review mechanisms and reporting processes. Their participation will ensure that governance is not compromised upon.
5. Reward or Rebuke- Either can be the Result: Nature has designed us in a way that we are held responsible for our actions in our due course of life so why not we follow the same at Work. This stage brings a sense of closure to a #scaleup process, however, when done appropriately it can create a virtuous cycle of these five key-steps. This would require guts but also remember to be hard on issues & soft on people. Repeat the above cycle in loop for a successful scaleup 😊
As goes a famous Urdu couplet: “Abhi to naapi hai mutthi bhar zamin humne Abhi to sara aasman baaki hai…”.
Scale up friends. Live it up!! Watch out for the next edition of TTT-7 on quick recap of 2018 and World of Work in 2019 & beyond. Also, you can refer to some interesting work done by Vyaktitva and their Tatva model. Gagan Adhlakha and Venkateshawar Iyer.
Entrepreneurial journey’s that I am working with and learning from…: Shelly Singh, Rajul Garg, Josh Bersin, Sumit Sinha, Ester Martinez, Sairee Chahal, Nirmal Singh, Varun Gera, Rajiv Jayavarman, Sandeep Sinha, Mrigank Tripathi, Vishal Saha, Prakash Rao, Kiran Kumar, Vikas Sapra, Devashish Sharma