Eight ways to create a powerful organizational community
Leaders are expected to embody the organization’s values. But their main role is to steer the community in the direction of its vision while embracing uncertainty and leading by example. Creating authentic organizational community requires leaders to rethink the way they operate. This can be difficult for leaders, as they have to let go of certainty, acknowledge limitations, and commit to constant examination of their blind spots. When practicing organizational community, leadership does not begin and end with those at the top. All employees are required be proactive and innovative in their search for success – in that sense, everyone is accountable.
Information is power. Information is a tool without which we cannot effectively do our work. While this seems simple in theory, organizations struggle to develop structure for effective communication. This communication includes the way in which information is shared, how well people listen, how clearly the information is delivered. One size does not fit all when it comes to effectively communicating. Is the language free from bias? Are leaders making clear requests that everyone can understand?
Yes, it is important to win, but leading organizations do not focus inwardly. In fact, a company that practices organizational community is incredibly service-oriented. Serving the customer in a caring, culturally competent way is a top priority for these organizations.
Organizations may practice knowledge sharing on a need-to-know basis, but those practicing organizational community are transparent with each other. Transparency between managers and employees creates trust and also allows the employee to understand how their role impacts the greater business. People who think that their work makes a difference in the organization are inherently more invested. Break down barriers that create artificial separations between people and create obstacles to productivity and success.
The more leaders can share, the better. Employees are found much more likely to support their leaders’ decisions if they are included in the original decision making process. This process creates a more engaged workforce as well as better results. Full inclusion means bringing all people together in decision making as well as conflict resolution. Many associate having conflict as a negative thing, but constructive conflict is powerful. Discussing differences as they occur and resolving them promptly allows the organization to continue to take steps forward toward success.