Internal Systems Case Study
The CEO of a technology-oriented business contacted me specifically to help improve flagging sales. What I found was a dysfunctional culture of underperformance, inappropriate behavior and deflated morale. Employees hid in their offices, co-workers fought openly and there were no consequences for insubordination, let alone incentives for success
As with many small businesses, this company’s founder had been its sole leader from day one. So while consulting included leadership development, much of my work focused on gaps in internal systems that made it hard for the best employees to know what was expected of them and made it easy for the worst employees to abuse the system.
After a full company assessment that included interviews with all employees, I worked with the CEO on a number of objectives aimed at increasing accountability and establishing systems for communication, team-building and, where needed.
We created job descriptions which clarified performance expectations; developed a process for employee evaluations that focused on personal development and organizational targets; created systems for more consistent and transparent communications; identified a number of managerial tasks that could be delegated to another employee, promoting her and empowering her to enforce certain policies; and implemented monthly team-building activities to facilitate better training, performance and a shared vision for success.
As is often the case in an unhealthy organization, the changes we implemented were initially uncomfortable for leaders and employees alike.
- Structures were introduced that increased accountability.
- Employees knew what was expected of them and understood potential paths for professional development.
- A culture of increasing trust emerged as team-building initiatives broke down longstanding walls
- Employees for the first time knew where the company was going and what challenges and opportunities they all faced together
- Sales increased as morale improved.
- Top-level leadership was freed up to focus on long-term planning, giving employees clearer targets tied to structured evaluations and rewards.