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Organizational Alignment: Understanding the Basics of a Successful Company

When you began your business, chances are you envisioned a thriving company that helped people with a particular service or project. You had great ideas, perhaps some solid leads and an assortment of resources. But beyond that, how much thought did you give to the daily maintaining of your enterprise? For some people, this maintenance means meetings, detailed plans, being willing to ask advice and other components of business. For others, having your own company meant being your own boss; others still, may have been somewhere between the two. This is no surprise as each of us have different ideas about how to manage a business and what makes it successful. But regardless, of the size of a business, one element in particular, must be there-organizational alignment.
What is organizational alignment, you may ask? This is when the component parts of an organization are pointed in the same direction. These components are the employees, members, associates, etc. that make up an organization. It should also be noted that the best way to have organizational alignment is to intentionally design a framework that encourages and strengthens the alignment. Like many things, organizational alignment is not “just for the church” or “just for the business world”; rather it is something that spans the sacred and the secular alike. So how is organizational alignment achieved? Is it some difficult, demanding, drawn out process? Not necessarily. However, there are 4 key principles to achieving organizational alignment. These principles are:
  • Visionary planning
  • Missional planning
  • Strategic planning
  • Tactical planning

Notice a trend here? Yes, it’s planning. In order to achieve successful organizational alignment, planning is a must.

Making the First Move: Planning

Some people are natural leaders, but not necessarily planners (the converse of this is also true). However, to be a success an organization must have leadership and planning. This is an age old truth, even referenced in Scripture when Jesus talks about how one does not build a house without first taking the time to count the cost (Luke 14:28-29). In order for an organization to succeed, frequent planning meetings are necessary. In fact, in Pat Lencioni’s book, the Advantage, he talks about four types of meetings that should be a part of every organization. Only having the occasional meeting will leave people feeling disconnected and break down organizational alignment. Having frequent meetings where responsibilities and accountability are included build a stronger team! It is also important to note that planning means different things to each person. As a result, it is helpful to first establish what planning means to your specific company or organization. This determining the definition of terms can be time consuming, but the outcome is worth it. Not only is having a common definition of planning vital, but understanding what is involved is equally important. Planning, in its most basic sense, is comprised of two connected concepts.
  • Not everyone is geared toward working in all the dimensions of planning.
  • Participants should be focused toward working in the dimension(s) of planning in which they are truly comfortable.

So, how do you begin to build a successful organization? Perhaps, planning still seems a bit over-rated. Maybe, you find yourself making these statements-

  • Things are good just as they are; there is no reason to change.
  • We had a planning event some time ago, there’s no need to do that again!
  • Getting everyone together for a meeting/planning session to determine a common language will be difficult.
Yes, these may “seem” like legitimate reasons to avoid planning, but these perspectives will not garner positives results.
Planning is one of the most essential elements in anything we do. As an old expression goes, “If you aim for nothing, you will hit it every time.” No one wants to spend time, energy and resources getting nowhere. By taking the time to plan what you want your business/organization to accomplish and how you are going to reach that goal will take planning. But, you don’t have to do it alone. Here at Pinnacle Coaching and Counseling Group, we have the tools to help your company reach its full potential. Contact us today to learn more.
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