"Culture eats strategy for breakfast," a famous quote attributed to business management guru Peter Drucker, remains relevant decades after it was first allegedly spoken. If the people within your organization don't feel connected to your company's strategy or change initiatives, those ambitions will never be realized.
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Strategies that are designed in isolation at the top level of an organization can be out of sync with what's really happening on the front lines. This is where the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) can really add value. If you aren't actively trying to engage your employees on a regular basis, you're missing out on an opportunity to gather and harness key insight that will improve your company's performance.
As business consultant Stan Slap says, "Human behavior is only unpredictable and dangerous if you don't start from humanity in the first place."
Here are five ways you, as a CHRO, can become a stronger strategic partner for your CEO:
Source opportunities and problems via continuous feedback loops.
Leverage and empower the wisdom of the the workforce.
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Build trust through transparency and inclusion.
Engage and tap into the discretionary effort of your employees.
Foster real-time moments for turning insights into action.
Providing an agile people system like the above will connect you with the culture of your workplace, which is necessary to make sure strategies are widely supported and on target. Digital engagement platforms can help enable these systems and provide real-time reports on the relevant data collected by said systems.
Gathering large-scale data sets on your employees' alignment and sentiment around a change effort is achievable today. CHROs that do this will help their organizations become more resilient against changing market dynamics and more sustainably successful.
To succeed in this endeavor, you'll need to be the type of leader who understands that the world doesn't operate on an annual cycle anymore. As a result, there are a few additional actions we suggest you take:
Stop running annual or biannual employee engagement surveys. Replace them with a continuous listening strategy that pulses out to employees on a regular basis.
Alternatively, at least augment your employee engagement survey with a pulsing strategy that is transparent and inclusive.
Stop annual 360s. Start continuous feedback on productivity.
Stop ignoring the wisdom of the crowd. Start transparency and inclusion touch points.
A version of this article originally appeared on the Waggl blog.
Waggl is the most human way for organizations to crowdsource feedback.